Cingular Wireless Puts Finalists to the Test

ATLANTA—Cingular Wireless is testing the threefinalists pitching its general market account in more ways than one. Late Friday, WestWayne of Atlanta and Tampa, Fla., BBDO Worldwide in New York and GSD&M of Austin, Texas, were told that deliberations involving the $250 million account would continue through the weekend, two weeks past the original Oct. 7 deadline. There also were reports that BBDO was out of the running, and that the review process had deteriorated into a politically charged power struggle between Georgia-based BellSouth and SBC Communications in Texas. At press time, officials at the recently formed BellSouth/SBC partnership said no winner had been selected.

WestWayne Withdraws From NAPA Race

ATLANTA—In the wake of its recent victory in the competition for the Southeast Toyota Distributors’$70 million advertising account, WestWayne has withdrawn from the $25 million review being conducted by NAPA (National Automotive Parts Association). The shop cited a potential client conflict as the reason for withdrawing from consideration. WestWayne of Atlanta and Tampa, Fla., was the incumbent advertising agency for NAPA—but considered a long shot—in a contest that includes Sawyer Riley Compton in Atlanta, Fahlgren of Columbus, Ohio, and a number of undisclosed shops.

Hardee’s Reduces Field to 4 Contenders

ATLANTA—Hardee’s Food Systems has narrowed the field in the review for its $80 million marketing account. The four finalists are: The Martin Agency, Richmond, Va.; TBWA/Chiatt/Day, Playa del Rey, Calif.; WestWayne Atlanta and Tampa, Fla.; and Cliff Freeman and Partners, New York. The agencies will make final presentations at the client’s headquarters in Anaheim, Calif., in mid-November.

Verizon Wireless Slows Regional Reviews

BOSTON—Verizon Wireless units which recently launched separate reviews for regional retail advertising assignments likely will not conclude those searches until “January—at least,” said Jim Gerace, a representative of the client in Bedminster, N.J. Gerace cited the reticence of the telecommunication company’s regional managers to change advertising agencies as the busy year-end holiday season approaches. Bozell in New York handles the $50 million Northeast retail advertising account, which includes much of the greater New York and New England markets. The client had also launched agency searches in the Southeast and Southwest.

Nestlé Moves PowerBar to Publicis

DALLAS—Publicis in Mid America has been assigned the estimated $20 million account of PowerBar, according to sources. The business, which had been at Wieden + Kennedy in Portland, Ore., was awarded to the Dallas office of Publicis without a review. Nestlé USA, which purchased the Berkley, Calif.-based maker of nutritional sports bars earlier this year, has been known to move the accounts of its acquisitions to its roster shops. Publicis in Dallas currently handles all of Nestlé’s ice cream and juice beverage advertising in the U.S.