Richards Wins Hyundai Creative

LOS ANGELES — Hyundai Motor America has awarded the creative portion of its $160 million national account to The Richards Group, the client said today.

The Dallas shop overcame the incumbent, Bates USA West in Irvine, Calif., as well as finalists Publicis & Hal Riney in San Francisco and Publicis in the West in Seattle.

“It came down to their strategic and creative thinking,” said Hyundai vice president of marketing Dave Weber.

The three-month review was led by Select Resources International in West Hollywood, Calif.

Bates has handled the account since Hyundai launched in the U.S. in 1986. In March, the shop lost the media account to Carat, New York, as part of a consolidation between Hyundai and Kia

Hyundai still retains the client’s dealer business, although Weber said the dealers will likely meet with Richards in the “not too distant future,” to determine if they want to move the account from Bates.

The Richards Group’s first work for Hyundai is expected to break in the fourth quarter of this year. The tag, “Driving is believing,” will likely be dropped, Weber said.