Arby’s Puts National Creative Portion of $100 Mil. Biz in Play

CHICAGO Doner said it will not defend the national creative portion of Arby’s $100 million account, which goes into review this week. The Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based client invited Doner in Southfield, Mich., to participate, according to Wanamaker Associates in Atlanta. Doner, an independent, handles regional franchisee business, which is not in play. Arby’s spent about $100 million on ads in 2003 and about $25 million through March, according to TNS Media Intelligence/CMR. RFPs will arrive at 15 shops this week, and the process is “closed” to further contenders, the consultant said. Media chores, with IPG’s Initiative in New York, are unaffected.

‘Crazyworld’ Keeps Turning In Two American Legacy Ads

BOSTON The American Legacy Foundation today breaks two spots from its “Crazyworld” campaign via Havas’ Arnold in Boston and MDC’s Crispin Porter + Bogusky in Miami. “Manipulator” and “Radiation People” highlight different harmful chemicals – ammonia and Polonium-210 respectively – found in cigarettes. The spots, tagged “Welcome to Crazyworld,” will air on The WB and MTV, among others, through August.

Samsung Decision Delayed; Fourth Contender Emerges

NEW YORK Shops awaiting a decision in Samsung’s $400 million global review will not receive an answer until next month, sources said. The client told shops it would select a winner in mid-July but last week said a decision would come in early August. The client could not be reached. IPG’s Foote Cone & Belding in New York is defending; WPP paired Red Cell with J. Walter Thompson, both New York, and Saatchi & Saatchi in New York and Leo Burnett in Chicago teamed up for Publicis. Sources said MDC’s Kirshenbaum Bond + Partners in New York, which has been working on projects for Samsung, also presented. Agency executives declined comment.

L.A. District Attorney to Investigate Fleishman-Hillard

BOSTON The office of Los Angeles District Attorney Steve Cooley said it plans to begin a criminal investigation into the billings practices at the Los Angeles office of Omnicom’s Fleishman-Hillard. In a statement, Cooley called the alleged false billing scheme a “form of theft” that, if true, bilked city taxpayers. Former agency employees told the Los Angeles Times last week that the shop routinely overbilled the city’s Department of Water and Power on its $3 million public relations contract, which the agency resigned in May. Richard Kline, general manager and senior partner at Fleishman-Hillard in L.A., said the agency is taking the allegations seriously and has launched its own investigation.

Ad Groups Argue Tobacco Regs Could Spark ‘De Facto’ Ban

WASHINGTON By giving the Food and Drug Administration the authority to regulate tobacco, as the Senate did last week when it passed new tobacco regulations, the government has paved the way for a “de facto ban on tobacco advertising,” according to three advertising lobby groups. The American Advertising Federation, the American Association of Advertising Agencies and the Association of National Advertisers claimed the measure would require the FDA to determine whether tar and nicotine levels must be included in all ads and package labels. It would also give states and local jurisdictions the authority to impose their own tobacco-ad bans, the groups said. In addition, the action would resurrect a 1996 FDA proposal banning outdoor tobacco ads within 1,000 feet of schools or playgrounds. The Senate bill must now be reconciled with a House version.

After Sentencing, Stewart Makes Plea to Supporters

NEW YORK Martha Stewart last week was sentenced to five months in prison and five months of house arrest, part of a two-year probation, for obstructing justice, conspiracy and making false statements to federal agents during their investigation of her ImClone Systems stock sale in 2001. Stewart will also have to pay a $30,000 fine. The sentence is pending appeal. Outside the courthouse on Friday, the former chairman and CEO of Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia asked supporters to subscribe to its magazines and encourage advertisers to return. Through August, the number of ad pages in Martha Stewart Living declined by 43.6 percent compared with August 2003. The company is exploring distancing the brand from Stewart’s name. The flagship magazine will unveil a new cover in September that emphasizes the word “Living,” with Stewart’s name in smaller type. Another title, Everyday Food, has cut the tagline, “From the kitchens of Martha Stewart Living.”

Senators: Nielsen, Nets Don’t Need Congress to Settle Dispute

NEW YORK Two senators last week said the dispute over Nielsen Media Research’s local people meters requires better communication, not legislation. Sen. Conrad Burns, R-Mont., chairman of the communications subcommittee of the Senate Commerce Commitee, and Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., heard two hours of heated testimony from Nielsen, Fox and Univision executives, as well as members of the Media Rating Council, the Advertising Research Foundation and the House before urging all parties to set aside emotion and work together. Critics have said the new system undercounts minority viewers, while Nielsen (owned by Adweek parent VNU) maintains the system is better than the paper diaries used previously and that the company is working with the MRC to correct problems with New York service.

WB Stars Don Kmart Clothing For Co-Branded Push

NEW YORK Grey Worldwide launches Kmart’s first TV spots in a cross-marketing campaign with the WB TV network today, the client said. Two 30-second spots, “Thalia” and “Route 66,” shot in the style of music videos, feature those proprietary Kmart clothing brands. The spots will run for six weeks on broadcast and cable. “Thalia” features stars from One Tree Hill as they prepare to go clubbing. Stars from Seventh Heaven and Reba appear in “Route 66.” Print is running in August and September issues of 18 titles aimed at 12- to 24-year-old readers.