Trial Date Set for Ex-Ogilvy Execs in ONDCP Billing Case

NEW YORK A trial date of Sept. 7 has been set for two former executives of WPP’s Ogilvy & Mather. Shona Seifert and Thomas Early, shown leaving court Friday, are accused of defrauding the government while working on the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy’s media campaign. Early, former senior partner and director of finance, and Seifert, former senior partner and executive group director (and currently president of Omnicom’s TBWA\Chiat\Day), are each charged with one count of conspiracy and 10 counts of making false claims and statements. Both have pleaded not guilty.

Pentagon Scrutiny Delays $180 Mil. U.S. Army Search

WASHINGTON The U.S. Army’s planned review of its account, worth $180 million a year, has been delayed by new Pentagon scrutiny of contracts over $500 million. (The four-year contract exceeds that sum.) The goal is to award a new contract by June 30, but an extension for Publicis’ Leo Burnett is possible, an Army rep said. The Army last June hired Chicago search consultancy Jones Lundin Beals, but RFPs have yet to go out. Burnett, creator of the “Army of one” tagline, plans to defend.

Decision Imminent in AOL’s $300 Mil. Media Review

NEW YORK A decision in AOL’s estimated $300 million media review is due early this week, possibly today. Two-hour presentations took place Friday, with Aegis’ Carat going first and incumbent IPG’s Initiative second. The pitches, originally slated for last Tuesday, were moved so chief marketing officer Joe Redling could attend, sources said. Brand marketing evp Len Short was also there, sources said. Publicis’ Starcom MediaVest dropped out last Monday, citing a conflict with its $750 million Disney media account. Pile and Co. is the consultant.

Arnold Hangs On to Fidelity’s $75 Mil. Creative Chores

BOSTON Havas’ Arnold in Boston has retained creative on Fidelity Investments’ $75 million account, the client confirmed. Arnold beat out sister shop McKinney + Silver in Raleigh, N.C., as well as Omnicom’s BBDO and TBWA\ Chiat\Day, both in New York. It was the first pitch for TBWA\C\D’s new ecd, Gerry Graf.

Old Navy Invites Agencies to Pitch

SAN FRANCISCO Omnicom’s BBDO, Publicis’ Saatchi & Saatchi and WPP’s Berlin Cameron/ Red Cell, all in New York, and Publicis’ Leo Burnett in Chicago are among the fewer than 10 shops Old Navy has invited to compete for its account, sources said. Pile and Co. in Boston is overseeing the search. Initial submissions are due the end of February, sources said. The winner will work with the clothing retailer’s in-house creative team. The client spent $130 million on ads in the U.S. through October of last year, according to TNS Media Intelligence/CMR. The client declined comment.

News Roundup

Independent Wieden + Kennedy and IPG’s McCann-Erickson dropped out of Nokia’s $35 million creative review, sources said. Grey in New York and Omnicom’s DDB in Chicago and Dallas will make final presentations next week. Sources said McCann in Troy, Mich., bowed out over a possible Microsoft conflict. … TiVo is expected to choose a shop to handle creative on its $10-12 million account this week, following final presentations last week from Havas’ Black Rocket Euro RSCG in San Francisco; IPG’s Mullen in Wenham, Mass.; and independents Ground Zero in Marina del Rey, Calif., and Grant, Scott and Hurley in San Francisco, sources said. The incumbent, Omnicom’s Goodby, Silverstein & Partners in San Francisco, is not participating. … Mohegan Sun said it named four finalists chasing creative on its $25-30 million account: independent incumbent Cliff Freeman and Partners, Publicis’ Bartle Bogle Hegarty and MDC’s Kirshenbaum Bond + Partners, all in New York, and IPG’s Mullen in Wenham, Mass. Select Resources International in Santa Monica, Calif., is managing the review. A decision is due in April. … CBS has dropped an ad from the White House touting new Medicare legislation, the network confirmed. Democrats have charged for weeks that the ad, by IPG’s Campbell-Ewald in Warren, Mich., is a political message and not simply a PSA, and asked the General Accounting Office to investigate.