Hill to Support CVS Expansion

Hill, Holliday, Connors, Cosmopulos is charged with refining the CVS brand to support the pharmacy chain’s planned expansion into new markets, including Illinois, Florida, Arizona and Nevada.

The Boston-based Interpublic Group agency will handle a range of advertising chores for CVS, including radio, print and TV work, but neither client nor agency would say when the first major salvo will be launched.

Hill, Holliday picked up the $35 million assignment from the Woon socket, R.I., client last week following a review. The agency was already a roster shop, hired some months ago on a project basis. Hill, Holliday outmaneuvered five-year incumbent Bates and Publicis in New York to win lead agency chores, sources said.

“We liked the input Hill, Holliday had on the ExtraCare program, which helped us to sign up 29 million new card holders in a little over a year,” said Helena Foulkes, recently promoted to svp of advertising for CVS, who oversaw the review process.

The agency’s strong creative reputation and track record with large retail clients were also believed to be key to its selection. For example, Hill, Holliday has for a decade created and placed advertising for TJX’s Marshalls off-price clothing chain. And the agency handles the media portion of TJX’s T.J. Maxx stores.

CVS represents the largest score for the agency’s Boston headquarters in several years. The shop has gained momentum of late, adding LoJack in late 2001 and teaming with IPG sibling McCann-Erickson this spring to add global work for PricewaterhouseCoopers.