McCann Heads to Reckitt Briefing Despite Conflict

NEW YORK McCann Erickson is scheduled to attend a briefing in Slough, England, on Friday with Reckitt Benckiser, despite entering a 90-day wind-down on its business with the client, sources said. Also scheduled for meetings on the $600 million global account are contenders WPP’s JWT and Havas’ Euro RSCG. McCann was defending its Boots Healthcare business in the review until it was asked by parent IPG to withdraw and not pursue any more Reckitt business because it conflicted with S.C. Johnson business handled by sibling Foote Cone & Belding [Adweek, May 18]. Sources said that Reckitt put McCann’s work into test regardless, yielding stronger results than work by JWT or Euro RSCG. Reckitt execs could not be reached for comment. The review began just three months after McCann returned to the Reckitt roster in October, when the client acquired Boots Healthcare. McCann had handled most of the Reckitt account until 2001, when it resigned the business after IPG bought FCB, and S.C. Johnson said it would not co-exist within the same holding company as its arch rival. A McCann rep declined comment. S.C. Johnson did not return calls.

ABM Launches Print, Digital Campaign Promoting Biz Pubs

NEW YORK American Business Media, the association of business-to-business information providers, will launch a campaign called “Devoured by the Influential” from DiMassimo in New York next week. The campaign, involving print and digital ads, will begin with an ad showing a digestive tract leading to the brain with copy that reads: “Business Media. Devoured by the Influential.” The ads will appear in publications such as Adweek, B-to-B, Chief Executive and The Wall Street Journal and on sites such as and

Carat Takes $125 Mil. Media Planning Duties for The Gap

NEW YORK Aegis’ Carat has won media planning duties for The Gap following a review, according to sources. The assignment covers the Gap label as well as Gap Body, Baby Gap, Gap Maternity and Gap Kids. Other contenders included WPP’s Mediaedge:cia, Publicis’ StarLink, independent Palisades Media Group and buying incumbent Omnicom’s PHD (buying was not part of the review), per sources. The San Francisco client could not immediately be reached. Sources expect the company to spend approximately $125 million this year.

Hill, Holliday Wins $20 Mil. Smith Barney Account

BOSTON IPG’s Hill, Holliday, Connors, Cosmopulos bas been selected to handle creative duties on Smith Barney’s estimated $20 million ad account, beating out Publicis’ Fallon in Minneapolis, according to sources. Fallon referred queries to the client, which did not immediately return calls. Hill, Holliday could not reached. The account had been at Omnicom’s Merkley + Partners, which split with the client and did not participate in the review.

News Roundup

Six Flags may select an agency as early as today for its $75 million creative account, after final presentations in New York last week, sources said. The five finalists presenting were WPP’s Ogilvy & Mather was followed by WPP’s JWT, IPG’s Deutsch and Omnicom’s BBDO and Zimmerman Advertising, sources said. Each shop got 2 and a half hours to present to nearly a dozen client execs [Adweek, June 5]. The agencies either declined comment or referred calls to the New York client, which said Friday it had nothing to report. … Questionnaires are due back Friday from agencies wanting to pursue creative duties for Pinnacle Foods, which claims $25 million in U.S. media spending, per the RFP. The privately held company in the past two years has acquired brands including Duncan Hines, Vlasic and Hungry Man, all part of the review. Independent Fogarty Klein Monroe in Houston, Texas, is the defending incumbent.

Holiday Inn Asks Travelers to ‘Look Again’ in New TV Spots

CHICAGO In its first extended television campaign since 2002, Holiday Inn over the weekend introduced a new tagline, “Look again.” The effort, from Publicis Groupe’s Fallon in Minneapolis, targets business travelers touting amenities such as high-speed Internet access, full-service meeting facilities and loyalty program points. The eight television spots depict three businessmen in humorous situations, such as sitting too close to each other in a hot tub. Holiday Inn will be spending $20 million on media from now until mid-November, when the campaign ends, according to Mark Snyder, svp of brand management for the company.

NEW YORK and TKTKTK is/is not defending, sources said. The Mountain Lakes, N.J., client will conduct agency visits through mid-July and cut to 4-6 finalists, per the RFP. The client will brief shops on July 18 with finals on Aug. 3 followed by an Aug. 11 decision. The client did not return calls, and it could not be determined how many agencies received the questionnaire.