Advertising Agencies Compete for a Slice of the Pie
At the MSA National Foundation Bidder's conference held in Washington D.C. on June 30, Chuck Wolfe, the Executive VP and Chief Operating Officer, announced the criteria that agencies have to meet in order to be eligible to bid.
Only shops with a billing of more than $500 million can bid; the account must also equal less than 25 percent of the winning shop's total business. Agencies with billings of $200 million can still participate by partnering with media, ethnic or other shops to raise their combined billings to $500 million or more. Shops with direct ties to tobacco companies are barred from bidding.
Consequently, only a narrow field of contenders will be eligible for the multi-million dollar assignment. Big players like Saatchi & Saatchi, Bates, Grey Advertising and Mezzina/Brown of New York; Leo Burnett of Chicago; and WestWayne from Florida - all disqualify by virtue of their Tobacco Clients. Given these parameters, qualifiers include Arnold Communications, D'Arcy Masius Benton & Bowles, Deutsch, DDB Worldwide, Publicis & Hal Riney, and Temerlin McClain.
Arnold Communications, the Boston agency for Massachusetts' Tobacco Control program, will be teaming up with Crispin Porter Bogusky, Miami, the agency that worked with Chuck Wolfe, executive vice president of the new master Settlement Agreement National Foundation, when he headed Florida's anti-smoking program.
Anti-smoking expert, Asher & Partners in Los Angeles, will pair up with Kirshenbaum, Bond & Partners and Western Initiative Media to bid on the $150-$225 million national anti-tobacco public education contract. Asher and Kirshenbaum are also in talks with Carol H. Williams Advertising, an African American shop in Oakland, California; Imada Wong Communications Group, an Asian American agency in Los Angeles; and Ad Americas, an Hispanic specialist in loss Angeles.
Agencies that attended the bidders conference included Deutsch and Jordan McGrath Case & Partners / Euro RSCG, both New York; Hill, Holliday, Connors, Cosmopulos, Boston; and The Richards Group, Dallas.