It’s Official: DirecTV to Deutsch

NEW YORK DirecTV has moved creative and media chores on its ad account to Deutsch, the client has confirmed. Estimated billings are $120 million.

Deutsch and deutschMedia offices here and in Marina del Rey, Calif., will work on the business.

Creative chores return to Interpublic Group’s Deutsch after two years at Omnicom Group’s BBDO in New York. Media duties had been at Omnicom’s OMD since shifting from Publicis Groupe’s Starcom.

“Advertising can be like the mafia,” said BBDO North America chairman and chief creative officer David Lubars. “Despite your best intentions, sometimes you get whacked.”

It is believed that the move occurred without a review.

“The plan is straightforward. We want to clearly establish the brand as the best television experience in the world while simultaneously driving profitable growth day in and day out,” said Paul Guyardo, client executive vice president and chief marketing officer, in a statement.

“We’ve done some of our most memorable, and frankly, some of the industry’s most recognizable work for DirecTV,” said Eric Hirshberg, president and chief creative officer at Deutsch.

DirecTV is the second client in less than a month to return to the IPG shop. Ikea, which left Deutsch in New York in 2000, returned its estimated $60 million ad account to the agency on Jan. 13.

Omnicom Group’s BBDO in New York landed DirecTV in February 2004 without a review from Deutsch\LA in Marina del Rey, Calif. That move was a direct result of BBDO’s December 2003 hire of executive creative director Eric Silver, who had a prior close working relationship with DirecTV’s then evp Neal Tiles.

When Tiles was head of marketing at Fox Sports Net, its agency was Cliff Freeman and Partners in New York, where Silver was the top creative who produced award-winning work on the Fox Sports account.

Last summer, Tiles left DirecTV and in October was replaced by Guyardo, who joined the El Segundo, Calif.-based DirecTV as CMO from Kmart.

DirecTV is partially owned by News Corp. subsidiary Fox Entertainment.

This story updates a post from earlier today with client confirmation and additional information on the return to Deutsch.