Scoot, the telephone directory service formerly known as Freepages,
is reviewing its full-service advertising business nine months after
relaunching with a campaign through Wolff Olins and World Writers. The
review follows the arrival of Richard Thackray as marketing director two
weeks ago. Thackray has used the AAR to draw up a shortlist of three
agencies - Lowe Howard-Spink, HHCL & Partners and BMP DDB. Media is also
being reviewed and the incumbent, Carat, is repitching.
ITV is to reschedule two of Vauxhall’s World Cup sponsorship idents so
that they run after the 9pm watershed, after the Independent Television
Commission received ten complaints about violent and vulgar aspects of
the idents. At the same time, ITV and Vauxhall’s ad agency, Lowe-Howard
Spink, are addressing another complaint received by the ITC: that the
idents contravene the sponsorship code by being too similar to the
current TV ads.
Robert Saville, the Mother founder, has reacted angrily to suggestions
that his agency was fired by Channel 5 after the two parted company this
week. ’After thinking long and hard about it, it was Mother that
instigated this move,’ he said. ’It was absolutely our intention to part
amicably and I’m sure we still will.’ Jim Hytner, the Channel 5
marketing director, said: ’We had a mutual parting of the ways after
hours and hours of discussion’.
British Interactive Broadcasting, the interactive digital TV joint
venture between BSkyB, BT, Matsushita and the Midland Bank, has begun
its widely expected trawl for a London advertising agency. BIB’s
marketing director, Nick Mercer, is believed to be contacting 12
agencies over the next couple of weeks.
Miller, the US brewer, is suing Bates USA and its associated media
operation, Zenith, for compensation and damages over claims that they
failed to deliver the target audience the company paid for when buying
TV airtime on its behalf. Zenith, which lost Miller’s dollars 250
million media buying and planning account to Leo Burnett in December
1996, dismissed the lawsuit as ’utterly ridiculous and without
Digital One, the consortium of GWR Digital Radio, NTL Digital Radio and
Talk Radio UK, has mounted an unopposed bid to run the national digital
radio service. In addition to the existing national services, the
ten-station multiplex will broadcast seven new formats, including a
sports channel that will go head-to-head with BBC’s Radio 5 Live. The
consortium aims to spend pounds 10 million on transmission over the
12-year licence period and will begin broadcasting in December.
MindShare is recruiting Rosie Faulkner, the former TSMS marketing
director, as a senior business director, heading up the strategic
planning on its Argos, Kodak, Telegraph and Ryvita accounts. Faulkner
left TSMS in May after just six months.
The Independent Television Commission is set to make its long-awaited
announcement on its proposals for the unbundling of cable and satellite
station packages this week. It is reported that although the regulator
has made it clear that it will reform the system to allow subscribers
more choice over which channels they pay for, it may allow existing
contracts to run to the year 2000.
Bids are still being considered for Talk Radio after last Friday’s
deadline. The proposed management buyout, led by Talk’s general manager,
Paul Robinson, gained credibility last week when United News & Media was
revealed as its backer. Meanwhile, Talk’s place on the national digital
multiplex could be at risk if the rival News International bid is
accepted. GWR - the major shareholder of the Digital One consortium - is
unlikely to allow Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation to take part.
The deadline for entries for the radio industry’s Aerial Awards is 10
July for a 22 October ceremony at Bafta. The chairman of the jury is
Chris O’Shea, creative partner of Banks Hoggins O’Shea, and entry packs
are available from the Radio Advertising Bureau.