Hotlines: Late-Breaking Industry News

5 Shops Vie for $20 Million In Medco Consolidated Duties

NEW YORK Medco Health Solutions, looking to consolidate direct marketing, public relations and interactive duties at a single agency, has selected five shops to compete for its creative account, sources said. Sources identified the contenders as Omnicom Group’s Rapp Collins, WPP Group’s Wunderman, Publicis Groupe’s Glow Worm and independent DiMassimoGoldstein, all here, and Interpublic Group’s Mullen in Wenham, Mass. Client executives have briefed the shops and final presentations are expected next month. Billings on the the business, which previously was split among several agencies, are estimated at $20 million. Medco manages pharmacy benefits for corporations, HMOs, unions, insurance companies and federal employees. The review is being managed by Alan Krinksy Associates here, according to sources. The consultancy did not return calls.

Children’s Advocacy Group Blasts Unilever’s ‘Hypocrisy’

NEW YORK A children’s advocacy group is calling on Unilever to stop sending mixed messages with its advertising for Dove and Axe. The Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood, a Boston-based group that claims to have 15,000 members, this week began a letter-writing campaign aimed at Unilever CEO Patrick Cescau. The organization claims that Bartle Bogle Hegarty’s work on Axe “epitomizes the sexist and degrading marketing that can undermine girls’ healthy development” while Ogilvy & Mather’s “Real Beauty” ads for Dove promote healthy self-images for women. Unilever said in a statement that the Axe ads are spoofs. “Unilever is a large, global company with many brands in its portfolio. Each brand’s efforts are tailored to reflect the unique interests and needs of its audience,” said Anita Larsen, a rep for Unilever.

Bartle Bogle Hegarty Promotes The Big Apple in $30 Mil. Effort

NEW YORK Giant floating hot dogs in the sky. A waving Statue of Liberty. Yankee Stadium with slices of pizza the size of the infield. It’s all part of a new $30 million global integrated campaign from Bartle Bogle Hegarty here for NYC & Company, a government organization that promotes the city as a tourist destination. This is the first time the city has been branded with a slogan. (“I love New York” referred to the state.) However, Kevin Roddy, ecd of BBH, explained, “We didn’t want to invent a snappy advertising line, we wanted to present New York to people.”

Campbell Mithun CEO Departs To WPP’s Ogilvy & Mather

CHICAGO Campbell Mithun CEO Jack Rooney will become president of WPP Group’s Ogilvy & Mather Chicago and North American CEO of OgilvyAction in December. Rooney, who had been at Interpublic Group’s Campbell Mithun for three years, will be replaced by 25-year agency veteran Steve Wehrenberg, who had most recently been chief operating officer of the Minneapolis shop. (Jonathan Hoffman remains president and chief creative officer.) Rooney, who was also once vice president of marketing at Miller Brewing Co., previously worked at Ogilvy from 2000 to 2002, leading the shop’s global BP retail account.

Contenders Await Decision In Bombay Sapphire Review

NEW YORK A handful of agencies await a decision in Bacardi’s review of global creative duties on its Bombay Sapphire brand, following final presentations last week at Bacardi in Miami, sources said. Sources said the contenders include Omnicom’s 180 in Santa Monica, Calif., WPP’s Rainey Kelly Campbell Roalfe/Y&R in London and the U.S incumbent, independent Sugartown here. Globally, major media spending on Bombay Sapphire exceeded $10 million last year and approached $1 million in the first five months of 2007, according to Nielsen Global AdView. The bulk of last year’s spend, about $7 million, was in the U.S., per Nielsen Monitor-Plus. The agencies either declined comment or could not be reached.The client did not return calls.

GSK Selects McCann Humancare For Anti-Depressant Launch

NEW YORK McCann Humancare here has landed creative duties on the launch of a new antidepressant from GlaxoSmithKline known as Velexity, sources said. The IPG shop won the assignment after a review in which Havas’ Euro RSCG, Omnicom’s BBDO and WPP’s Grey were the other finalists, said sources. Billings are estimated at more than $40 million. The winning agency, a GSK roster shop that also handles brands such as Avodart and Cervarix, declined to comment, and GSK in Research Triangle Park, N.C., did not return calls.

2 ECDs Leave Saatchi & Saatchi To Start Their Own Agency

NEW YORK Jan Jacobs and Leo Premutico, both ecds at Publicis Groupe’s Saatchi & Saatchi, New York, have left the shop to form their own agency, said sources. Jacobs, an art director by trade, and Premutico, a copywriter, last worked on Wendy’s, which earlier this year began a new campaign featuring a man in a poorly fitted red pigtail wig talking about “hot, juicy burgers.” The creative team was brought over from Saatchi & Saatchi London 2 1/2 years ago by Tony Granger, CCO, after he arrived in the New York office in 2004 from the London office, where he was ecd, a title he retained. “I will replace them, although I’m not sure with who yet,” said Granger. “It’s a question of what do we need and who are the right people to bring in. We’re not in any rush to knee-jerk replace the boys. The deal with them was that they would always come and help reinvent this place and then they would leave.”