U.S. Army Pours $250 Mil. Into Six-Month Recruitment Effort

WASHINGTON The U.S. Army will spend an estimated $250 million during the next six months on ads aimed at recruiting 18- to 25-year-olds for active and reserve duty, an Army rep said. The figure represents a substantial increase by the Army, which typically spends $180-200 million on ads in a year, to recruit young people during the war in Iraq. The Army reached its goal for June but is still expected to fall short of its 2005 quota. The increase will cover ads, sponsorships and the Army Web site. Publicis’ Leo Burnett in Chicago will continue to handle the account during that time, as the Army last month extended the agency’s contract until a new shop is picked in December.

British Airways Puts $100 Mil. Global Creative Work In Review

British Airways last week placed its $100 million global creative account into review and invited 10-year incumbent M&C Saatchi to defend. British Airways’ commercial director Martin George said in a statement, “As the airline continues to face the challenges of an increasingly competitive market, we are required to review all our major contracts.” A client rep provided no further information, and M&C Saatchi execs were not available for comment. Media duties, with Publicis’ ZenithOptimedia, are not in play, the rep said. A decision is due in September. The airline moved to M&C Saatchi in 1995, following Charles and Maurice Saatchi to their new venture after a dozen years at Saatchi & Saatchi.

Coke Awards Duties On Vault To Publicis in New York

LOS ANGELES Coca-Cola Co. roster shop Publicis in New York has won creative duties on Vault, a Coke rep confirmed. The Publicis shop prevailed over three others, including MDC’s Kirshenbaum Bond + Partners in New York and independent Wieden + Kennedy in Portland, Ore. Ads for Citrus-flavored Vault will target 18- to 34-year-old men. The drink will compete against PepsiCo’s Mountain Dew. Publicis’ first task is to create TV spots for Vault in 10 test markets. The shop will also create radio and outdoor ads, sources said.

Finalists In Hilton’s $40-50 Mil. Review Await Decision

Los angeles A decision is due this week in the review for Hilton Hotels’ estimated $40-50 million account, according to the Beverly Hills, Calif., client, which declined further comment. Final pitches concluded last week and were made by Omnicom’s GSD&M in Austin, Texas; WPP’s Young & Rubicam Brands in Irvine, Calif.; incumbent IPG’s Foote Cone & Belding in Irvine, Calif., Chicago and New York, and McCann Erickson in New York; and Omnicom’s TBWA\Chiat\Day in New York.

Havas To Consider Committee Rule Instead of New CEO

LOS ANGELES The Havas board of directors will discuss how to replace CEO Alain de Pouzhilac, who resigned on June 20, at their scheduled board meeting tomorrow. A decision is expected no later than Wednesday, sources said. The board will appoint what one executive described as “a non-executive chairman, a financial executive,” to oversee a chief executive committee that could include a group of top execs at Havas’ largest agency, Euro RSCG, including Mercedes Erra, chairman of Euro BETC in Paris, Stephane Fouks, CEO of the French division, and Euro’s New York CEO David Jones, or the interim shepherds of the French company, including Havas worldwide creative chief Jacques Séquéla, Arnold head Ed Eskandarian and the head of Media Planning Group, Fernando Rodes. Havas’ first choice to be CEO, TBWA worldwide CEO Jean-Marie Dru, declined the offer.

Following Cannes Nod, Fallon’s Citibank ID Theft Spot Goes Wide

LOS ANGELES A spot in Fallon’s famous identity theft campaign for Citibank that was produced last year but aired only in test markets breaks this week in heavy rotation. Shortlisted at Cannes, “Ooh La La” touts the bank’s Fraud Early Warning program and shows a middle American couple sitting beside an Eiffel Tower lamp and photos of the couple in Paris. The woman, speaking in a faux French accent says, “She left her card at the café and voila!, I am off to Las Vegas. Lady Luck is my lover.” In the three years since the Minneapolis-based Publicis shop has handled the account, Citibank ads have won more than 150 creative awards.

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