Vidal Partnership Is Choice of Old Navy

DALLAS Old Navy is expected to award a creative Hispanic assignment to The Vidal Partnership, sources said.

The San Francisco-based Gap subsidiary is set to hire the New York shop following a review that included Omnicom Group-backed Dieste Harmel & Partners in Dallas. Publicis Groupe-backed Lapiz in Chicago initially participated in the review but dropped out due to a conflict with Hanes, Gap representative Claudia Hawkins has said.

Neither the shops nor the client could immediately be reached for comment.

Independent Vidal’s television work, expected to break in the last quarter, will be the client’s first Hispanic effort. A representative has said the assignment is consistent with Old Navy’s strategy of targeting specific consumer segments to complement its overall message [Adweek, Aug. 4].

The client’s new senior vice president of marketing, Susan Wayne, was involved in the agency selection process, Hawkins has said.

Old Navy is one of the top five sportswear brands purchased by Hispanic families and teens, according to Cambridge, Mass.-based STS Market Research. In 1998, only 5 percent of Americans of Hispanic origin shopped at Old Navy; as of last fall, 21 percent said they shopped there, according to Mediamark Research Inc. of New York.

Old Navy spent $150 million on ads last year, according to Nielsen Monitor-Plus. Spending for the Hispanic effort is undisclosed. Omnicom’s PHD in New York and San Francisco handles media.