Kmart Reaches Out on Its $270 Mil. Account

NEW YORK Kmart is contacting agencies to develop a new strategic positioning for its brand, according to sources.

The creative portion of the account is split between Omnicom’s TBWA\Chiat\Day in New York, which handles broadcast ads, and independent Meridian Advertising in Troy, Mich., which handles print work such as circulars. It could not immediately be determined if those shops are invited to participate.

The client, also in Troy, which emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in May, began sending out an extensive briefing document to agencies late last week, according to sources, with full presentations scheduled to begin the week of July 28, sources said.

Client executives could not immediately be reached for comment. In 2002, Kmart spent $270 million in measured media, according to TNS Media Intelligence/CMR. It spent $60 million from January through April of this year.

Last month, the company said it gave marketing responsibilities to Karen Austin, 41, its chief information officer since April 2002. That move came after Barbara Firment, 51, senior vice president of advertising, sales and in-store presentation, left the company on June 13.

—with Andrew McMains