Media Edge Wins RCCL Media; Raises Conflict Question For NCL

NEW YORK – Young & Rubicam’s media unit, The Media Edge, last week bested finalist Carat ICG for an estimated $40 million in media duties from Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.
Y&R, however, handles media for RCCL competitor Norwegian Cruise Line in Coral Gables, Fla. The agency’s Chicago office won NCL’s creative and media duties last August without a review. The $10 million business had previously been at Goodby, Silverstein & Partners in San Francisco. It was unclear at press time how Y&R will handle the apparent conflict or whether it will resign NCL.
RCCL is the parent of Royal Caribbean International and Celebrity Cruise Lines, which merged last year.
The win is Media Edge’s second in the last three months. In March it picked up $260-280 million in media chores from fast-food conglomerate Tricon. The New York agency pitched RCCL with Harris Drury Cohen in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., the incumbent on Celebrity’s creative and media.
In addition to Carat in Los Angeles, semifinalists had included RCI incumbent McKinney & Silver in Raleigh, N.C., which teamed with Western International Media, New York, and its subsidiary, Media Partnership in Norwalk, Conn; and Horizon Media and DeWitt Media, both in New York, sources said. Creative assignments are unchanged.
Consultant Jan Apple of Minnetonka, Minn., handled the review. Executives at Y&R and both clients could not be reached for comment.
RCI spent more than $50 million and Celebrity $20 million on ads in 1997, per Competitive Media Reporting.