Newswire

Additional Contenders Emerge in Hilton Review
LOS ANGELES–Two more contenders have surfaced in the review for Hilton Hotels’ estimated $50 million global ad account. Bates USA West in Irvine, Calif., will pitch with Zenith Media Worldwide, New York, the incumbent for global media buying chores. D’Arcy Masius Benton & Bowles in New York is also participating, sources said. The group of agencies invited to present to the Beverly Hills, Calif.-based client also includes U.S. incumbent Dailey & Associates, Los Angeles, which is teamed with Lowe Howard-Spink in London and Western International Media in Los Angeles; Young & Rubicam, San Francisco and London; and J. Walter Thompson, San Francisco [Adweek, Aug. 25].

Executives Leave Saatchi’s Kids’ Unit
NEW YORK–Three senior executives at Saatchi & Saatchi’s Kid Connection here have resigned. Julie Halpin, general manager, Chris McKee, a creative director, and Rachel Geller, international director of strategic planning, have left the agency. According to sources, they may be joining the WPP Group to start up a children’s marketing division. WPP declined comment. The three executives could not be reached. Saatchi & Saatchi announced that Anne Adriance, a founding partner of the Kid Connection, will reassume her post as general manager. She is currently executive vice president and director of creative brand development at Saatchi. McKee’s duties will be assumed by a group of other creative directors at Kid Connection.

Continental’s Global Account Moves to Ayer
DALLAS–N.W. Ayer & Partners, New York, was awarded Continental Airlines’ estimated $50 million global ad account last week after a review that included U.S. incumbent The Richards Group, Dallas, and Ogilvy & Mather, TBWA Chiat/Day, Bates Worldwide and Ammirati Puris Lintas, all in New York. Ayer will handle advertising in the U.S. for the Houston-based airline and either oversee or eventually replace Continental’s agencies in Central America, South America and Europe.

Little Caesars Launches Big! Pizza
DETROIT–Little Caesars Pizza, headquartered here, kicks off a campaign today to promote its new “Big! Big!” pizzas, which are four inches larger than the previous sizes and are topped with giant slices of pepperoni and ham. The TV spot from Cliff Freeman and Partners, New York, comically asks, “Does this mean everything will get bigger?” and cuts to a baby who is obviously much bigger than the average newborn. When the doctor taps him on the bottom, the baby socks the doctor in the face.

BK Introduces Big King Burger
CHICAGO–Burger King Corp., Miami, rekindled its comparative assault on rival McDonald’s by introducing a new Big King burger touted as having 75 percent more beef than McDonald’s Big Mac. Some spots from Ammirati Puris Lintas, New York, for the new burger feature college football coaches; food-focused spots use Roger Miller’s “King of the Road” and the Temptations “Get Ready” as musical backgrounds. Uniworld Group, New York, handles African American-targeted advertising. Bromley, Aguilar & Associates, San Antonio, handles Spanish-language ads.

Texaco Unveils Corporate Campaign via BBDO
NEW YORK–Texaco launched its first corporate ad campaign last weekend featuring the new tagline, “Texaco. A world of energy.” The effort for the White Plains, N.Y.-based client from BBDO here was initiated by Texaco chairman and chief executive Peter Bijur. “He made a real strong commitment to tell people who we are,” said Kjestine Anderson, general manager of public relations and advertising for Texaco, noting that the campaign is getting $30 million in support. The work was not altered following what Anderson called the company’s “diversity crisis,” where high-level Texaco executives were accused of making racial slurs. All the company’s future ad efforts, including a new U.S. product campaign under development at BBDO, will carry the new tagline.

Farewell to Fred the Baker?
BOSTON–Dunkin’ Donuts this week rolls out a month-long national TV and radio campaign focusing on the possible retirement of longtime character Fred the Baker. In the ads, created by Messner Vetere Berger McNamee Schmetterer/Euro RSCG in New York, Fred (who has pitched fried dough since 1982) seeks counsel from “retired” celebrities such as Larry Bird, Bob Dole and Mary Lou Retton. Fred’s decision will be revealed at a press event on Sept. 17.

Bates Breaks Avis Campaign
NEW YORK–Bates USA here will break two 30-second TV spots tomorrow for Avis Rent A Car as part of a campaign called “Employee Stories.” The spots still employ the “We try harder” tagline but reveal more of a “human side” of the Garden City, N.Y.-based company compared to previous ads, which were more product-oriented, according to a Bates representative. The new ads show Avis employees going the extra mile to help customers.

Newswire Roundup
Credit Lyonnais in New York is in negotiations with the Advertising Agency Register, also New York, about possibly conducting an agency review for its estimated $1 million ad account, sources said. The client declined to comment and AAR could not be reached. The account is currently at Publicis/Bloom in New York John Perriss, chief executive officer of Zenith Media Worldwide in London, has named Steve King chief executive officer of Zenith Media Europe, Middle East and Africa. King, currently chief operating officer of Zenith in the U.S., replaces Derrick Southon in September. Southon will retire at year’s end.