5 Shops to Pitch Theme Park’s $75 Mil. Creative This Week

NEW YORK Five agencies will make final presentations this week in Six Flags’ $75 million creative review, sources said. Each shop will get two and a half hours to present to about 10 client executives, including chairman Dan Snyder, according to sources. Contending are the New York offices of WPP shops JWT and Ogilvy & Mather, IPG’s Deutsch and Omnicom’s BBDO and Omnicom’s Zimmerman Advertising in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. [Adweek Online, May 4]. The agencies either declined comment or referred calls to the New York client, which also declined comment. The incumbent, independent Doner in Southfield, Mich., is not defending. Media duties are at WPP’s MindShare.

IPG Names First Worldwide Chief Strategic Officer

New York IPG’s Initiative last week appointed Janet Fitzpatrick to the new position of worldwide chief strategic officer. Fitzpatrick, who will be based in New York and report to Initiative worldwide CEO Alec Gerster, will ensure that resources and talent are leveraged properly across the worldwide network. She will also work closely with regional leaders and lead the company’s growing pool of channel planners. Fitzpatrick was previously vp and director of global marketing at Motorola, where she was credited with helping to revitalize the company’s brand and gain revenue share in North America, Latin America and other markets. Prior to her Motorola stint, she was CEO of MindShare Japan.

Danone Names 4 Agencies In $75 Mil. U.S. Media Review

NEW YORK Four shops are competing in Groupe Danone’s U.S. media planning and buying review, including the incumbent, WPP’s MediaCom, according to sources. Omnicom’s PHD, Aegis’s Carat and Havas’ MPG are also in the hunt, per sources. The Paris-based yogurt maker spent $75 million in domestic measured media last year, according to TNS Media Intelligence. The client confirmed the review last month, but would not disclose the contending shops [Adweek Online, May 19]. Presentations are scheduled for mid-June; Danone expects to make a decision by late July or early August, sources said.

$25 Mil. Bridgestone Firestone Review Enters Finals

BOSTON Four agencies have been invited to make final presentations in the review of Bridgestone Firestone’s broadcast creative and media assignment, according to Pile and Co., the consultancy overseeing the process. Estimated billings are $25 million. Advancing are independent The Richards Group in Dallas, WPP’s Grey in New York (the incumbent), IPG’s Foote Cone & Belding in Chicago and Publicis’ Leo Burnett, also in Chicago. Final presentations are slated for mid-July. Cut last week were Havas’ Arnold in Boston, independent Cramer-Krasselt in Chicago and Publicis’ The Kaplan Thaler Group in New York. Grey has held the account since 1998; its WPP sibling MediaCom handles buying chores. Gish Sherwood, which is located near the Nashville, Tenn.-based client, is responsible for print duties, which are not included in the review.

$50 Mil. LG North America Review Down to 2 Agencies

NEW YORK Two finalists remain in contention to handle North America creative duties on LG Electronics’ estimated $50 million account: Omnicom’s Merkley + Partners in New York and the U.S. incumbent, BrandBuzz in New York, which is pitching with the Mexico City and Toronto offices of sister shop Young & Rubicam, sources said. The agencies made presentations to the Englewood Cliffs, N.J., client about three weeks ago, along with Publicis’ The Kaplan Thaler Group in New York, said sources. Kaplan Thaler was cut last week. Early in the review, WPP’s JWT also pursued the account, but the shop withdrew just before presentations, sources said. The next step in the process could not be determined. Merkley did not return calls, and BrandBuzz referred calls to the client, which could not be reached.