Virgin Schedules Final Pitches
LOS ANGELES–Final presentations in the $25 million Virgin Entertainment agency review will take place Aug. 28. Virgin is looking for a shop to create a branding campaign for its Megastores retail chain and affiliated Web sites. It is in discussions with 120, Los Angeles, Leagas Delaney, San Francisco, and undisclosed others.
N.Y., S.F. Shops Pursue $20 Mil. MLB Account
NEW YORK–At least three shops are vying to handle consolidated ad duties for Major League Baseball. Those three are: New York shops TBWA\Chiat\Day and McCann-Erickson and FCB Worldwide, San Francisco, sources said. Billings are estimated at $20 million.
Taco Bell Taps Dieste for Hispanic Ads
DALLAS–Taco Bell selected Dieste & Partners to handle its $5-6 million Hispanic advertising account. The Dallas agency beat Mendoza, Dillon & Asociados, Newport Beach, Calif., and the team of FCB Worldwide, Costa Mesa, Calif., and SiboneyUSA, New York. The Mexican-style fast-food chain is based in Irvine, Calif.
Red, Heater Advertising Unite
BOSTON–Two small, creatively driven shops on opposite coasts, Red and Heater Advertising, have joined forces. Heater, an eight-person operation in Boston, will now function as the East Coast office of Mill Valley, Calif.-based Red, which has 15 staffers. The Heater name will no longer be used. Don Easdon and Jeff Billig from Red and Heater’s Steve Giuggio become managing partners of the combined entity. All three originally worked together at Boston shops Hill, Holliday, Connors, Cosmopulos and Heater/Easdon Advertising.
McCann Launches New Washington Mutual Ad
LOS ANGELES–McCann-Erickson, Seattle, has unveiled a TV spot announcing Washington Mutual’s improved home loan center Web site, The spot, titled “Couple,” is part of a branding campaign that also includes radio, newspaper, magazine and out-of-home advertising. The spot will air through Aug. 27. Consumers can use the site to apply for home loans and find local home-loan centers. Washington Mutual Mortgage has 176 such centers in 29 states.
MetLife Taps Consultancy for Review
ATLANTA–Will Joey Reiman kill Snoopy? That was the question last week when it was reported that Reiman’s BrightHouse consultancy in Atlanta had been retained to review insurance giant MetLife’s marketing communications strategy. “We operate under the radar,” said Reiman, “but MetLife is a client.” Young & Rubicam in New York, MetLife’s agency, has bet the spokesbeagle can still deliver the goods.
Mendelsohn/Zien Spices Up Taco Bueno Campaign
LOS ANGELES–Mendelsohn/Zien, Los Angeles, has unveiled a new campaign featuring Taco Bueno’s spokeshand, SeNor Bueno. SeNor Bueno, who sports a felt-tip mustache, plastic eyes and an accent, has appeared in nearly 20 commercials for Taco Bueno, Carrollton, Texas. The spot is geared toward the 18-34-year-old market.