Kohler Begins Creative Review

Kohler is circulating a request for proposal for its $15 million creative account, agency sources said last week.

The Kohler, Wis.-based maker of kitchen and bath fixtures has asked shops to submit case studies demonstrating experience in both durable goods and consumer packaged products, according to a copy of the questionnaire obtained by Adweek.

The review, believed to be national in scope, is being managed in-house. Proposals are due back in mid-October. The account involves both television and print.

A Kohler representative de-clined comment.

TV work has been handled recently on a project basis by The Martin Agency in Richmond, Va. Deutsch in New York has also done ads for the client in the past. Martin executives could not be immediately reached for comment on whether it is participating in the review.

Grey Worldwide resigned the print portion in July after handling it for 13 years; billings were estimated at $5 million. Steve Blamer, president of New York-based Grey, said in a statement at the time that the parting was a creatively driven decision: “We reached an impasse due to philosophical differences over the creative direction and, secondarily, financial issues made this determination that much easier.”

Starcom USA in Chicago was awarded Kohler’s media buying ac-count last year.

The privately held Kohler had estimated sales of $2.4 billion in 1998. Chairman Herbert Kohler Jr., grandson of the firm’s founder, controls most of the company.