Petsmart May Review

Pet Supply Chain Talks Informally to Shops
LOS ANGELES–With a new management team in place, Petsmart may restart an agency review later this year.
David Mills, vice president of advertising and sales for the Phoenix-based pet supply retail chain, said he has had informal “conversations” with agency executives in recent months but that no review is currently under way.
“I’m not saying there won’t be a review,” he said, adding that a decision on a search will likely be made in the next 30-60 days.
Dennis Miller, president of Petsmart’s longtime agency, Publicis (formerly EvansGroup) in Seattle, said he has no reason to believe the account may be going into review again.
Petsmart began a review of its estimated $20 million account last summer, but cancelled it just weeks later when its president resigned [Adweek, June 30, 1997]. Some 30 agencies from the West Coast to Chicago were initially asked to submit credentials. Cliff Scott, principal of The Scott Group, Agoura Hills, Calif., served as the consultant on that review, and would likely be called on to coordinate a new search.
Petsmart has undergone several management changes since last summer. Its current president and chief executive officer, Philip Francis, was brought on board in March. Francis added the role of chief operating officer in May when Donna R. Ecton resigned that post in a senior management reorganization.
As of May 3, the end of the company’s fiscal first quarter, Petsmart operated 410 superstores in North America and 89 in the U.K. Its 1998 revenues were $1.8 billion, and earnings were $34.4 million.