Ireland Names Finalists for Tourism Business

NEW YORK Tourism Ireland said it has selected finalists in the review for its global ad account. The budget is about $60 million over three years, and the client’s current contract with Interpublic Group’s McCann Erickson expires at year’s end.

McCann and its media partner, Universal McCann, are contending. Also in the mix are WPP Group’s Young & Rubicam and its sibling J. Walter Thompson. Those shops are separately pursuing creative, but are both partnered with WPP media arm Mindshare. Havas’ Euro RSCG and MPG are also pursuing the account, which the client said is worth more than $60 million over three years.

The agencies are pitching from multiple offices. McCann in Dublin, Ireland, heads up the business, with input from the agency’s offices in London, New York, Paris and Frankfurt, Germany.

A winning agency will be named in October for a new campaign to launch in 2006, the client said, with consumer targets in Britain, the U.S., France and Germany.

McCann created the current campaign, tagged “Ireland, the island of memories.”