Hotline

Dieste Puts Harmel’s Name on the Door

DALLAS—Hispanic marketing communications shop Dieste & Partners has added the name of co-founder Warren Harmel to its shingle, becoming Dieste, Harmel & Partners. Tony Dieste, president of the $135 million Dallas agency, said the decision was announced at its year-end meeting and came as a surprise to Harmel. “Warren has been a very important part of the growth of the agency,” Dieste said. “I felt it was important for him to have recognition.” Harmel retains the title of managing partner.

Agency Founder Chip Atkins Dies

DALLAS—Chip Atkins, 74, founder and chairman of The Atkins Agency (now Atkins/Lord & Lasker), died Dec. 28 following a brief battle with cancer. Atkins founded his agency in 1963 and saw it grow to become one of the largest in the Southwest. A memorial service held last week was attended by hundreds of people, including San Antonio mayor Ed Garza, and former mayor and U.S. housing secretary Henry Cisneros. The latter said Atkins’ agency was responsible for the tourism explosion experienced by the city during the 18 years the shop handled the convention and visitors bureau.

Rizzuti Closes Shop, Plans to Rebuild

DALLAS—John Rizzuti, founder of Rizzuti.com, said he has laid off the remaining staffers and relinquished his office space in an attempt to rebuild the agency from ground zero. From a peak of 12 employees, the Dallas shop retains only Rizzuti and media director Lisa Austin on the payroll, but has begun adding small projects. Said Rizzuti, “Our clients basically vaporized after Sept. 11.” His high-tech roster of accounts such as Front Range Solutions and Track Software were “companies who depended on [outside] funding for business to get taken care of,” he said.

Richardson Advertising Launches Cirro

DALLAS—Richardson Advertising has introduced its first television work for startup electricity supplier Cirro Corp. The Dallas agency in late December began airing a TV spot contrasting cold winter scenes of an electric meter with a warm background and the text, “Why waste your energy worrying about energy?” A jazz rendition of “Auld Lang Syne” ends with the tagline, “Here’s to a new acquaintance … Cirro.”

Archer/Malmo Gets Into the Racquets

ATLANTA—Ektelon, a manufacturer of racquetball equipment, has named Archer/Malmo its lead advertising agency. The Memphis, Tenn., shop won the business after a review, which was sparked after account executive Erin Reynolds departed crosstown incumbent Design Group to join Archer/Malmo. “Erin had provided Ektelon with tremendous account service,” said agency executive vice president Mary Caywood. “At the same time, Ektelon was looking for a full-service capability to further promote themselves in the market.” Billings are undisclosed. A print and collateral campaign, initially built around the signing of Canadian superstar Kane Waselenchuk to Team Ektelon, begins next month in Racquetball Magazine.