Ayer chairman Jerry Siano last week said there ‘couldn’t possibly’ be a merger with Ketchum Communications as long as his agency has a shot at the $140-million Oldsmobile account review and remains agency of record for General Motors’ corporate business. Responding to press reports, Siano said there has been ‘no due diligence, no real estate negotiations and no approval of any deal by me or the board.’
Reached at an industry meeting in Florida, Ketchum chairman/ceo Paul Alvarez, whose agency handles the $100-million Acura luxury car account, said, ‘It (the merger) isn’t happening’ at this time. ‘How imminent can the deal be if I’m down here in Florida?’ he asked rhetorically. Alvarez said that merger talks with other New York shops are going forward but also are ‘moving slow.’
Copyright Adweek L.P. (1993)