Chevy Changes Its Tune In Silverado Campaign

CHICAGO Having retired its “Like a Rock” theme in 2005 after 13 years, Chevrolet returns to a musical anthem to advertise its Silverado truck. New ads from IPG’s Campbell-Ewald in Warren, Mich., introduce the theme, “Our country. Our truck.” TV ads feature “Our Country,” a new song from John Mellencamp that will be used through at least 2007. Lyrics include: “I can stand beside ideas I think are right. I can stand beside the idea to stand and fight. I do believe there’s a dream for everyone. This is our country.” Print inserts launched in USA Today on Friday; TV spots began on Saturday. Chevy’s over-arching line, “An American revolution,” remains.

Another Busch Rises To the Top at A-B

CHICAGO The fifth generation of the Busch family will assume the helm of Anheuser-Busch as the board of directors last week named August Busch IV, 42, president and CEO, effective Dec. 1. He will succeed Patrick Stokes, 64, who will become chairman after August Busch III retires on Nov. 30. The latter will continue to serve on the board. Stokes has been with A-B for 37 years. As president between 1990 and 2002, he saw A-B gain almost half of all U.S. beer sales. Busch IV started with A-B as an apprentice brewer and has since worked in marketing and management roles during his 21 years at A-B. He assumed the top beer-company post after Stokes was promoted to his corporate position four years ago. Busch IV has overseen campaigns for Bud Light and Budweiser.

Shareholders Approve Sale of Univision Network

NEW YORK Univision shareholders last week approved the acquisition of the firm by an investor group that includes Madison Dearborn Partners, Providence Equity Partners, Texas Pacific Group, Thomas H. Lee Partners and Saban Capital Group for $36.25 per share in cash, or a total of $13.7 billion, including the assumption of $1.4 billion in debt. The transaction, subject to federal regulatory approvals, is expected to close next spring. Univision is the fifth-largest U.S. network, trailing ABC, CBS, NBC and Fox. Its other assets include a second TV net, TeleFutura, cable net Galavision, local TV and radio stations and a music company. The agreement had already been approved by the Univision board of directors and was not contingent on financing. Univision had net revenue of almost $2 billion in 2005, per its filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Gannett to Distribute Customized Video to Go

NEW YORK Gannett Broadcasting has launched Gannett Video Enterprises to provide customized video to other media for on-air, online and wireless distribution. The move comes at a time when new distribution channels are seeking video content, particularly news and information. The new Gannett unit will collect news and other material from the firm’s 23 TV stations in markets such as Washington, D.C., Atlanta, Phoenix and Denver, and repurpose and repackage it for other media channels. Among the content Gannett will offer are 30- and 60-minute shows for broadcast and cable and one- to three-minute segments for online, on-demand and wireless technologies, hosted by Gannett’s TV talent.

Wrigley Names Bravo Lead Hispanic Agency

NEW YORK The Wm. Wrigley Jr. Co. has selected The Bravo Group as its lead Hispanic agency following a review. The New York-based WPP Group shop will develop creative and promotional marketing programs for Wrigley’s brands. The client considered three other finalists: incumbent Lapiz of Chicago, LatinWorks in Houston and Conill Saatchi & Saatchi, which has offices in New York, Los Angeles and Miami. Lapiz has been the brand’s Hispanic agency since 2001. The firm recently decided to consolidate all U.S. Hispanic creative and promotional marketing initiatives for Wrigley products and the confectionery brands acquired from Kraft. The review included all U.S. Hispanic planning for the core gum business (Orbit, Orbit White, Winterfresh, Big Red, DoubleMint, Juicy Fruit, Eclipse, Freedent, Extra, Hubba Bubba) and non-core brands (Altoids, Lifesavers, Cremesavers). Wrigley spent about $6 million on Spanish-language media in 2005 and almost $3 million in the first four months of 2006, per TNS Media Intelligence.

Pace of Online Ad Growth Show Signs of Slowing

NEW YORK Online advertising continues to demonstrate robust gains in 2006, though the pace of such growth will slow slightly. Internet ad revenue neared $8 billion in the first six months of the year, per figures released by the Interactive Advertising Bureau and PricewaterhouseCoopers. The record $7.9 billion haul gathered through June 2006 represented a 37 percent increase over the same period last year. The second quarter alone saw revenue exceed $4 billion, also a record. Yet according to Web researcher eMarketer, online advertising is not growing quite at the exponential clip seen in recent years. EMarketer said overall spending will increase by a still enviable 26.8 percent this year, versus growth spurts of more than 30 percent in the previous two years. Total dollars will near the $16 billion level by the end of this year, pushing past $21 billion in 2007, per eMarketer. While online ads will account for just 5.7 percent of total media dollars this year, by the end of the decade it will reach 8.9 percent of spending. Paid search advertising still accounts for the lion’s share of Web spending (about 40 percent of ad revenue), according to both eMarketer and PwC.

Element 79 Establishes Sports Marketing Division

CHICAGO Element 79 here said it is launching a sports marketing unit to help clients such as Gatorade, Nascar and the LPGA take advantage of promotional opportunities. Though the shop has access to similar resources within parent Omnicom, evp John Fraser said having a dedicated group within the agency would provide more cohesive communications programs. The unit will look for sports marketing opportunities ranging from professional athletics to grass-roots-oriented programs like 5K runs Fraser and group creative director Danny Schuman will lead the unit, reporting to Element 79 president and CEO Brian Williams.

$100 Mil. in Grocery Spending Shifts From Duncan to Dailey

LOS ANGELES Dailey & Associates said it has added creative and media planning chores for four Super- valu grocery chains, quickly replacing some of the billings it will lose as a result of the decision Safeway made last month to award its $250 million broadcast business to DDB and PHD. IPG’s Dailey in West Hollywood, Calif., takes over on the Acme, Albertsons, Jewel-Osco and Shaw’s/ Star Market properties. Independent Duncan & Associates in Los Angeles had handled those brands, which spent about $100 million advertising last year, per Nielsen Monitor-Plus. Albertsons alone spent close to $70 million on ads in 2005 and $30 million through July 2006, according to Nielsen. Jewel-Osco and Acme respectively spent $20 million and $15 million on ads last year, while Shaw’s/Star spent $2 million, per Nielsen. Dailey ends its work for Safeway on Oct. 1, the same day it will start on the Supervalu chains. It could not be determined if the Eden Prairie, Minn.-based client met with other shops. Albertsons has 550 stores nationwide, primarily in the Western U.S. The other chains have about 200 stores each, located mainly in Midwestern and Northeastern states. IPG’s Initiative retains media buying for all stores.