– Citibank Pitches Draw to Close Minus McCann
NEW YORK–Merkley Newman Harty here presents creative concepts to Citibank executives today in the last of seven pitches for the bank’s $150-170 million ad account, sources said. Final meetings began last Monday, a week after McCann-Erickson Worldwide withdrew from competition, citing a conflict with Washington Mutual, a longtime client. Sources said Citibank may cut to a shorter list for another round of presentations, but it could also select an agency immediately.
– Singapore Airlines Launches Media Review
LOS ANGELES–Singapore Airlines is reviewing its $40 million global media buying and planning account, about $7 million of which is spent in the U.S., sources said. An early round of presentations by undisclosed agencies took place in Singapore last week, said sources. Last month, the airline’s lead agency, The Batey Group, closed its service office here to concentrate on the Asian and Australian markets.
– Jonathan Mandell Leaves N.W. Ayer & Partners
NEW YORK–Jonathan Mandell, who joined N.W. Ayer & Partners in April 1999 as worldwide chief creative officer, has left the agency. Mandell, 45, was the first major hire of Ayer CEO Mary Beth Casey, who lured him away from Ammirati Puris Lintas, where he had been executive vice president, managing director, creative, on Burger King. Mandell could not be reached for comment. Casey has promoted copywriter Jack Cardone, 42, who joined Ayer in 1981, and art director Michael Grieco, 43, who joined in 1985, as co-chief creative officers. The pair created the shop’s “Work hard. Fly right” campaign for Continental Airlines.
– Hill, Holliday Seeks Return of $500,000
BOSTON–Hill, Holliday, Connors, Cosmopulos has filed a lawsuit in Suffolk Superior Court here seeking the return of $501,430 the agency claims was paid in error to the family of the late George “Jay” Hill, who helped found the Boston agency in 1968. The shop contends that Hill and his family should have received $20 million for Hill’s equity in the Interpublic Group shop. Instead, Hill and the trust received $20.5 million, which the agency attributes to an “oversight.” An agency rep said the shop was seeking to recover the funds out of obligation to its shareholders. The family has said through its attorney that it is entitled to the amount.
– 3 New York Shops Pitch Xenical This Week
New YORK–Three finalists in Roche Laboratories’ review of its Xenical account pitch creative concepts this week: Young & Rubicam, Ogilvy & Mather and Jordan McGrath Case & Partners/Euro RSCG, sources said. Billings are estimated at $80 million.
– BPI Communications Heads to Greenwich Village
NEW YORK–BPI Communications, which includes Adweek, Mediaweek and Brandweek, moves this week from Times Square to 770 Broadway, New York, N.Y., 10003. The new general phone number uses a different area code: (646) 654-5220. The new general fax number is (646) 654-5365.