News Wire

Smith Succeeds Lutterbach at Leap
CHICAGO–R. Steve “Rick” Lutterbach, architect of The Leap Group’s stock offering in September 1996, officially stepped down last week as chairman and chief executive officer due to lingering health problems stemming from an August automobile crash. Lutterbach remains on Leap’s board of directors. Succeeding him as chairman and chief executive is Fred Smith, a Leap founding partner and president of its Quantum Leap division. Smith has been acting chief executive officer since August. Leap also reported a one-cent-per-share profit for the quarter ending Jan. 31, compared to a 22-cents-per-share loss the previous quarter. For its fiscal year, Leap reported a 91 percent increase in revenues to $30.7 million, but a net loss of $5.6 million versus net income of $1.3 million the previous year.
Valvoline to Hear Final Pitches
CHICAGO–Valvoline, Lexington, Ky., will see final presentations this week for its $20-25 million motor oil account. Sources said Lowe & Partners/SMS, New York, and Chicago shops Cramer-Krasselt, Euro RSCG Tatham and Lois/EJL are the contenders. Jones-Lundin Associates, Chicago, is conducting the review. Bozell, New York, resigned the account in November, when it was placed in review.
Publicis Designee Leaves TN Board
CHICAGO–Lazard Freres investment banker Ali Wambold last week resigned his seat on the board of directors at True North Communications. He had been the designee of Publicis Communication, Paris. Following TN’s acquisition of Bozell, Jacobs, Kenyon & Eckhardt in December, Publicis’ stake in TN has fallen to 11 percent, below the 18 percent mark that mandated representation on TN’s board. Publicis chairman Maurice Lƒvy informed TN last month that the French agency does not intend to acquire enough TN stock to merit slating a designee for election to the board at this year’s shareholders meeting on May 13.
McCann Wins Silicon Graphics Account
BOSTON–Silicon Graphics has chosen McCann-Erickson, San Francisco, to handle its $40 million Windows NT computer account following a review. Arnold Communications in Boston was runner-up. Incumbent CKS Partners, Cupertino, Calif., will continue to create corporate ads for the client.
Bates Launches Consulting Division
NEW YORK–Bates USA here has opened Whetstone Resources, a new unit offering a full range of strategic services, including business and marketing planning and new product development. The unit will be run by Edward “Ted” Parrack, who has been working with Bates during the past two years on a consulting basis. Parrack will report to Bates North America chief executive Bill Whitehead.
New VW Beetle Ads to Bow This Week
BOSTON–The wraps come off a highly anticipated new campaign this week as ads for the launch of Volkswagen’s New Beetle from Arnold Communications are unveiled. Television spots are scheduled to break March 23. The “Drivers wanted” tagline, created by Arnold and introduced two years ago, will appear on the new work. No launch slogan or dramatic shift in media buying strategy is expected. “The engine is in the front but its heart is in the same place” is a headline on one of the many print ads, said client representative Tony Fouladpour.
Merger Could Cost Tarlow Coleman Account
CHICAGO–Coleman Co.’s $10 million account is unlikely to remain at Tarlow Advertising, New York, after Sunbeam Corp. completes its acquisition of Coleman, sources said. The deal was announced last week. Coleman’s former owner, MacAndrews & Forbes Holdings, moved the account last September from Martin/Williams, Minneapolis, to Tarlow, which handles MacAndrews’ Revlon unit. Sunbeam and Coleman officials could not be reached for comment. Ogilvy & Mather, Chicago, is agency of record for Delray Beach, Fla.-based Sunbeam.
Newswire Roundup
McCann-Erickson Worldwide has won Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co.’s Asian and Latin American accounts, worth more than $40 million in billings. The business was put in review in January after being pulled from Leo Burnett, Chicago, in response to a racially offensive TV spot created by Burnett’s affiliate agency in Peru [Adweek, Jan. 19]. McCann already works with the client in Europe Foote, Cone & Belding, San Francisco, breaks a new national TV campaign today for Levi Strauss & Co.’s Dockers brand. The effort features the new tagline “One leg at a time,” replacing “Nice pants” Four finalists have emerged in the competition for a TV project from Kohler Co., Kohler, Wis., said sources. They are: Laughlin/Constable, Milwaukee and Chicago, and New York agencies Wieden & Kennedy, N.W. Ayer & Partners and Grey Advertising, which creates print ads for the company. Presentations are set for early April Eastpak in Lowell, Mass., has awarded its estimated $2 million account to New York-based RDA International, said sources. RDA beat out TBWA Chiat/Day and Grybauskas Beatrice, both New York, sources said. Clarke Goward in Boston resigned the account late last year Ketchum Advertising in Pittsburgh has been named agency of record for Zippo Manufacturing Co.’s $5-8 million account, succeeding Sirianno Associates, Amherst, N.Y. HMS Partners, Columbus, Ohio, acquired the $7 million agency Pete Smith Advertising, which will be merged into HMS’ Minneapolis office. Terms were not disclosed.