DIARY: Homebase not where TBWA's heart is as DIY ethic fails to impress

As competition hots up for the hotly contested Homebase account, we hear news that TBWA/London has been knocked out of the three-horse race, leaving Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO and Lowe to fight it out for the multimillion-pound prize.

This may come as a surprise to some observers who'd heard of TBWA's cunning plan to win the business during the pitch process.

Never one to miss an opportunity, the TBWA ruse involved turning a recent agency away-day doing a community project into an added opportunity to plug the prospective client. Agency staff spent the day decorating a hostel for the disadvantaged - and what better place to show off the products in situ than featuring a team of happy workers using Homebase-branded products as they toiled.

Despite TBWA's shameless - or very smart - abuse of its charity away-day, it seems its efforts have unfortunately come to nothing. Still, it can take some small crumbs of comfort from the knowledge that it came up with the most snappy endline.

We're not sure why its "Homes to D-I-Y for" line didn't cut the mustard with the client. Instead, AMV's nugget, "We know homes inside out", is, as we speak, battling it out in the strapline stakes against Lowe's lofty "We turn ideas into inspiration". Time will tell who wins.

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