Edition, March 22, 2000, Page 1
HAS $50M DRIVE FOR BIOFOODS
Worldwide next month will launch a $50 million+ PR, PA and
ad campaign for a coalition of life science companies to
promote genetically modified foods as safe and not harmful
to the environment.
of the group, which does not yet have a name, include DuPont,
Monsanto, Novartis, BASF, Dow, Aventis and AstraZeneca.
has been widespread concern and even "hysteria"
in Europe over such foods. One object of the drive is to
prevent such a reaction in the U.S.
wouldn't discuss specifics of the campaign, referring questions
to coalition members.
Forte, VP-global PA at DuPont, said the firm was picked
because it has previously worked with companies and trade
groups in this area. A three to five-year campaign is planned.
consumers have thus far shown little interest in the genetic
food debate, said Brian Sansoni, spokesperson for the Grocery
Mfrs. of America. It's a "blip on the radar screen,"
Margulis of Greenpeace said the drive was a sign of desperation.
The biotech industry "has its back against the wall
and it's going to throw money at PR and other efforts,"
50 PR FIRMS BILLED $2.8B IN 1999
50 largest PR operations, based on documentation received
by the O'Dwyer Co. from 35 firms and reports on another
15 supplied by the Council of PR Firms, billed $2.8 billion
continued as the No. 1 PR operation with $274 million in
fees, up 6.3%, but Fleishman-Hillard overtook it as the
biggest U.S. firm by growing 33% to $181M in U.S.-only fees.
B-M was up 16% in U.S. revenues to $164.8M.
top 50 billed $2.26B in 1998 but the two figures are not
comparable because of mergers and new firms added to the
list plus new sources of income being counted by CPRF member
rules allow members to include commissions from issue and
corporate ads, research, and other PR-related sources to
a limit of 49% of the total. O'Dwyer rules ask firms to
limit such commissions, profits and mark-ups to 7.5% of
PR Worldwide, using CPRF rules, had the biggest gain in
the top ten, up 58.8% to $125M. Next biggest top ten gainers,
also using CPRF rules, were GCI Group/APCO Assocs., up 41.5%
to $112.7M, and Shandwick, up 41.1% to $240.2M.
Spun off at $70M
specialist Brodeur Worldwide, formerly part of Porter Novelli,
was spun off as a separate unit billing $70M. Despite the
loss of the unit, PN reported a gain of 17% to $214M. Both
use CPRF rules (denoted by an asterisk in the ranking list).
billed $45.8M in 1995.
following the O'Dwyer rules, grew 32.8% to $213.4M in worldwide
Worldwide, using CPRF rules, spurted 53.5% in 1999 to $49.7M
after being down 5.4% in 1998 to $32.4M and up 5.8% in 1997.
It billed $41.9M in 1988 and employed 614 (vs. 277 now).
was again the biggest owner of PR firms, its PR fees totaling
about $700M (PN, F-H, Ketchum, Brodeur, GPC, Lois Paul,
and Cone). GPC, based in Canada and with many affiliates
in Europe which are being acquired, billed about $35M including
about $6M in the U.S. Omnicom units had $497M in fees in
1998. Interpublic controlled $411M in fees, up from $313M
in 1998 (Shandwick, Weber, Golin/Harris and Access).
firms again were the big gainers.
PR Worldwide grew 30% to $101M and 11th place
with 556 employees ($182K per employee).
Edstrom, which handles Microsoft and other high-tech clients,
was up 23% to $50.5M; Text 100 grew 47% to $36.8M; Cunningham
Communication 14% to $23.3M; Schwartz Communications 40%
to $21M; Lois Paul & Partners 20% to $16.2M; FitzGerald
Communications 50% to $13.4M; Middleberg 119% to $11.3M;
Access Communications 54% to $10.5M; Hoffman 24% to $8.7M;
Neale-May & Partners 102% to $8.2M; Applied Communications
100% to $8.1M, and Wilson McHenry Co., 21% to $7.8M.
did not supply the PR trade press with employment totals
or other backup to the dollar figures of members. The 15
CPRF member firms in the top 50 only gave information to
Bergen, CPRF president, said some members obtained statements
from CPAs or had other documents and these would be given
to the press at some point in the future.
does not collect W-3s, top pages of income tax returns or
"agreed-upon procedure" statements of firms, relying
instead on statements of CFOs or management of the individual
Ad Age Stopped Collecting Documents
noted that Advertising Age stopped demanding CPA statements
in ranking 700+ ad agencies. AA started asking for such
documents in the 1980s after some firms were found to be
falsifying their gross incomes (the 10-15% in commissions
collected on billings). The magazine denounced Ted
Bates & Co. in 1986 for damaging its rankings for years
by reporting 15% of its billings rather than the true gross,
which was closer to 10%.
had a worldwide gross of $329 million in 1985 and not the
$466M it reported, fumed AA.
castigated was Della Femina, Travisano & Partners for
allegedly kiting income by 100%. Jerry Della Femina said,
"I freely tell people that we bill 'a greatly exaggerated
$250M' when asked." He added that padding was rife
in ad agency billings figures. AA at that time said it would
fight this attitude by insisting on CPA-verified statements.
which began taking numerous measurements of ad agency income
(its current questionnaire is six pages long and has 200+
line items), now relies solely on statements by CFOs and/or
other members of agency management.
ad billings and gross income, AA measures billings by nearly
20 types of media; sales promotion income; direct marketing,
many types of website activity; trade shows; business-to-business,
catalogues, etc., and asks for U.S. and int'l totals.
the O'Dwyer rules ask for complete account lists so the
press can locate PR firms handling accounts and clients
can check for conflicts, several major firms have been reducing
their public lists in recent years. Hill and Knowlton identified
18 clients this year although it once listed hundreds of
Martins, 35, resigned as VP-communications
and PA for the Cleveland Browns. Martins, who joined the
team in 1998 after 10 years with RDV Sports/Orlando Magic,
is weighing opportunities...Meryl
Pearlstein, 20-year travel publicist, to
Nancy Jo Friedman PR, New York, from KWE Assocs., where
she was group director. Friedman recently signed Americanexpress.com;
Great Eagle Hotel, Kowloon, Hong Kong, and Brasserie Gaby,
new restaurant opening June 20 in the Hotel Sofitel, New
Cutlery, Olean, N.Y., with sales of $125M,
named Ruder Finn for a two-year campaign, replacing Stanton
Crenshaw Communications. The pitch was directed by Mary
Trudel, EVP of RF*s marketing communications group...Cold
Stone Creamery, Scottsdale, franchiser of
ice cream and frozen yogurt stores, to BRW LeGrand, Denver.
The firm has 85 outlets in 16 states and plans to add 250
more by the end of 2001...Del Webb Corp., Phoenix, to Blaze
Co., Venice, Calif. for PR for four of its Sun City retirement
Edition, March 22, 2000, Page 2
SAYS VALLEY PR WOMEN PARTY
April issue of Harpers Bazaar, which is due out in
two weeks, has an article that says PR women are the most
sought-after females in Silicon Valley
writer, Nancy Jo Sales, says the high tech industry, which
is 30% women, is "very dependent on PR and people who
work in PR tend to be women, and the women tend to be attractiveits
almost part of the job description."
said Internet billionaires Steve Ballard and Steve Case
each married company executives from the PR/marketing department.
Villanueva, former VP of communications for America Online,
married Case, the companys CEO, and Connie Snyder,
formerly on the Microsoft PR team of Waggener Edstrom, married
Ballard, Microsofts president/CEO.
the real babes work in PR firms," Sean Garrett, who
is PR director for start-up Listen.com, told Sales. "You
see a lot of dating between industry guys and PR girls,"
Garrett is quoted as saying in the article.
Marino, 32, who runs a PR firm with her sister, are featured
in the article.
sourcewho asked not to be namedsaid the Marinos,
who specialize in dot-com clients, are called "PR bunnies."
[Susie] throws the best parties," he says.
is the most important thing you have in an Internet company,"
said Francois-Xavier Nuttall, the CEO of AudioSoft, "because
thats how you attract investors and the Marino girls
are becoming the most important PR company to have."
told Bazaar that industry parties go on all the time. "Some
women show up in what the PR girls call boob dresses.
They get on the circuit and start working the geeky Internet
LABELED "DINOSAUR" BY NEW YORKER
New York Stock Exchange is characterized as a dinosaur by
the March 20 New Yorker, with other electronic exchanges
making it obsolete.
about everywhere but in New York, stock trading has become
an electronic enterprise transacted via computer rather
than face to face," says the four-page article by Elizabeth
Kolbert. "The new trading systems that are being unveiled
practically every month all employ the latest Internet technology
in lieu of human contact."
the last few years, the London, Paris and Frankfurt exchanges
have abandoned their trading floors.
new trading operation was launched just last week. Archipelago,
an electronic network with links to the Pacific Stock Exchange,
will compete for business from the NYSE.
NYSE also faces heightened competition from the NASD, which
plans to raise fresh capital through an initial public offering.
all this, the fortunes of the NYSE may be waning. In its
latest financial results, the NYSE said it lost $800,000
on $184.3 million of revenues. This compares to net income
of $7.4M on $187.8M of revenues the same period a year before.
pretty much every juncture since its inception, the members
have resisted any sort of change that might adversely affect
their livelihoods," the article states. Ray Pellecchia,
a spokesman for the NYSE, disagreed with the article.
ASKS COURT FOR $586K
Tobia, co-owner of the now-bankrupt Pacific/West Comms.
Group, is seeking $586,000 as reimbursement for expenses
as a result of his lawsuit against the Calif. Dept. of Transportation.
put his firm under Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in 1998,
claiming it was caused by a downward turn in its client
base stemming from his dispute with Caltrans, a major client.
RAPPED FOR COLUMN BY PR PRO
Columbia Journalism Review has criticized The Knoxville
(Tenn.) News-Sentinel for not telling readers that columnist
Cynthia Moxley is president of Moxley Carmichael, a local
the `special to the News-Sentinel feature carries
her byline, it offers no hint of whats really behind
those breathless plugs for, among other organizations she
represents, the TVA, the Knoxville Utilities Board, and
First Tennessee Bank," said CJR.
said the thing that surprised her the most about the report
was that CJR never called her or the paper.
a result, the magazine got three things wrong.
they spelled the name of the column wrong (It is Strolling);
secondly, TVA has never been my client, and third, the column
runs every other Tuesday, not weekly."
UNDERCUTS PR PROS CLAIM
dismissing Metabolifes lawsuit against WCVB-TV, Boston,
a federal judge undercut PR consultant Michael Sitricks
claim that the station had broadcast a misleading excerpt
from an interview with a doctor.
a client of Sitricks firm, sued WCVB, its reporter
Susan Wornick, and Dr. George Blackburn, after the ABC affiliate
aired an excerpt from an interview with a doctor who alleged
that people can die from taking Metabolifes diet pills.
E. Hillard, 82, who co-founded Fleishman-Hillard
in 1946 and retired in 1982, died March 14 at his home on
Spring Glen Lake in Caledonia, Mo.
serving in the U.S. Navy during World War II, Hillard teamed
with Alfred Fleishman to found F-H in St. Louis.
continued to run the firm until 1974, when he turned over
the reins to John D. Graham.
Edition, March 22, 2000, Page 3
ARE INVITED TO TRAVEL SHOW
than 150 travel writers and 250 travel exhibitors have
registered to attend the first Travel Media Showcase, which
is scheduled for June 11-14 in Atlantic City.
Aarons, who was formerly EVP of the Miss America Pageant
for 10 years, is producing the show for the Atlantic City
Convention and Visitors Authority. Lois Gerber, a
Secaucus, N.J.-based travel PR consultant, is handling media
objective of the show is to allow travel pros to have one-on-one
meetings with writers. Each exhibitor
has been asked to come to the show with at least "five
headlines" to pitch to writers who visit their booth,
travel workshops and outside speakers are also planned.
opening day speakers are John Berendt, author of "Midnight
in the Garden of Good and Evil," and Jenny Stacy, who
handles media relations for the Savannah, Ga., area convention
and visitors bureau.
wanted to get someone, like Berendt, who has had a major
impact on tourism," said Aarons.
will be offered free lodging, meals, and special airline
rates, but they are required to put down a $100 "good
faith" deposit, which will be refunded after they attend
the meeting. The ACCVA plans to hold the show on an
annual basis for the next three years.
information is available at www.travelmediashowcase.com.
Biddle, a reporter for the Los Angeles bureau
of The Wall Street Journal, has joined Sitrick and Co.
Talley, previously a reporter for American
Banker, has joined J.R. O?Dwyer Co.'s editorial staff.
Crown, 46, was promoted to managing editor
of Crain's Chicago Business, and Joseph Cahill, 40, previously
a reporter in The Wall Street Journal's Chicago bureau,
has rejoined as assistant managing editor.
new staffers include: Sandra
Jones, 36, previously with Bloomberg News
to associate editor, covering technology and telecommunications;
34, named Internet reporter, contributing primarily to crainschicagobusiness.com,
and Kathleen Schmidt,
47, a writer at American Marketing Assn. magazine?named
Moore, previously with the Bass Anglers
Sportsman Society, has joined Outdoor Life in New York,
as executive editor, succeeding Ed Scheff.
Scheck, formerly editorial director and
editor of Fly Tyer magazine, has joined OL as features editor,
replacing Bob Brown.
Johnson is leaving Fortune to join Honey,
a new magazine for African-Americans.
Dreyfuss is also leaving Fortune to become
editor of Urban Box Office, an Internet firm.
Windolf, who was executive editor of The
New York Observer, has joined Vanity Fair as senior articles
editor, replacing Ned Zeman.
Laffitte was named fashion director of Nylon
magazine, and April Hughes, former market editor for Elle,
was named senior fashion editor.
Garbraino, previously style director for
US magazine, has joined the "Style" section of
The New York Times as a reporter.
Rose, who covers technology news for Crain's
Chicago Business, has begun writing a new weekly technology
column, called "Tech Watch."
Daniels, who was a reporter at Investment
News, was assigned to cover real estate, and Kevin Knapp
was given the manufacturing and transportation beat.
an interactive, video-based New York lifestyle website,
will launch May 1.
website's founder, Doug Kilzer, who previously was at Kratz
& Jensen, a PR firm, is seeking press kits and information
about New York restaurants, events, shopping, entertainment,
performances and any other lifestyle-type stories.
Sacko, also a former K&J publicist,
who is now a freelance writer for Bon Appetit and other
publications, is assisting Kilzer.
Madison ave., 5th fl., New York, NY 10016. 212/252-0352;
fax: 1457; [email protected].
has named Henry Goldblatt,
29, editor of "First," the magazine's lead section.
who has rejoined the New York staff after nine months in
Fortune's San Francisco bureau, covering technology, has
to pull together 15 pages every fortnight, combining late-breaking
news, opinion pieces, and cartoons.
an E-commerce site which will launch May 1, is being developed
by Freedom Communications, a chain of 28 newspapers, which
is based in Irvine, Calif., in partnership with Lewitt &
LeWinter, which publishes Mode and Girl magazines.
new website will offer merchandise and apparel for full-figured
Britton, who was editor of Mode and continues
to contribute monthly features to the magazine, is editor-in-chief
said features will be created exclusively for the Web and
will differ from what is offered in Mode magazine.
preview of the site shows such features as the top 10 trends
for spring, beauty trends and short items on health and
Edition, March 22, 2000, Page 4
MAGS BEEF UP FASHION COVERAGE
Weekly and People
have added new editorial features that have a fashion and
new two-page feature called "The Scout" will report
on what's new and next, and what's in and out.
has expanded its "Style Watch" section to three
pages, up from one, and added a celebrity-studded fashion
column called "Behind the Seams," written by Steven
which went weekly on March 17, plans to devote nine to 11
pages a week to coverage of fashion and beauty news. Susan
Kaufman, who is creative director, will edit USWeekly's
Fair has a new entertainment section called
nine-page section uses a format that reminds some observers
of Spy, the monthly humor magazine that is no longer published.
section, which lampoons personalities, also covers books,
music and travel, and it has an "out & in"
page, which was a staple of Spy.
Carter, who is VF's editor-in-chief, was a founder of Spy.
TOPPED DWJ'S HIT LIST IN 1999
analysis of the nearly 12,000 usages for DWJ projects in
1999 shows stations are still looking primarily for news
you can use.
said medical stories accounted for 34% of the hits and 33%
of the audience, followed by consumer stories at 26% and
stories about computers and the Internet ranked third at
13% and 96.6 million viewers or 13% of the total, according
to DWJ's report.
interest stories, such as the auction of Marilyn Monroe's
dresses, were popular, along with financial stories that
than half (53%) of the airings were in the top 50 markets,
DWJ's analysis shows.
morning shows emerged as the biggest users of DWJ stories
closely followed by the early evening shows from 4 to 8
p.m., which traditional led in usages.
new medication for pain topped DWJ's list of stories with
the most airings in 1999.
story aired 588 times and made 62.7 million viewer impressions,
second ranked story also involved medicine: animal trials
of a new vaccine to prevent nicotine addiction, and Christie's
auction of Marilyn Monroe's gowns and other memorabilia
was the third ranked story with 542 airings and 32.4 million
said seven computer stories finished in the top 25 with
IBM's "Computer on a Chip" at the top of the list
and in eighth place overall.
CO. TO ACQUIRE TIMES MIRROR
owners of The Chicago Tribune and The Los Angeles Times
have signed an agreement to combine the two companies.
Tribune will pay approximately $8 billion to acquire the
Times from the Chandler family.
press release issued by Hill and Knowlton's Chicago office
said the combined company will be one of the largest providers
of interactive news and information services in the U.S.
and the largest multi-media company in four of the nation's
five most populous states--California, New York, Illinois
Tribune, which owns several TV and radio properties, including
WGN, interactive sites, and the Chicago Cubs, also publishes
The Chicago Tribune and daily newspapers in Orlando and
Tribune has a daily circulation of 654,000, while The Los
Angeles Times has a circulation of 1,098,000, making it
the third largest daily newspaper in the U.S. behind USA
Today and The Wall Street Journal.
the Times, Times Mirror also publishes Newsday, The Baltimore
Sun, The Hartford Courant, The Morning Call (Allentown,
Pa.), The Advocate (Stamford, Conn.) and Greenwich (Conn.)
company also publishes several consumer magazines, including
Field & Stream, Popular Science, Golf and Outdoor Life.
Willes, who is CEO of Times Mirror, said he will leave after
the deal is completed.
who had no previous newspaper experience, was hired in 1997
to rebuild the company's newspaper properties.
closed New York Newsday, and the Evening Sun in Baltimore.
also initiated several cross-marketing schemes that some
news staffers believed were unethical.
Wall Street Journal Sunday, a four-page
section of personal finance features, is running in the
business sections of 16 Sunday newspapers.
recently was added to these six papers: Austin (Tex.) American-Statesman,
Ft. Worth (Tex.) Star-Telegram, Providence (R.I.) Sunday
Journal, Arlington Heights (Ill.) Daily Herald, The Record
in Hackensack, N.J., The Hartford (Conn.) Courant, Greenwich
(Conn.) Time and Stamford (Conn.) Advocate.
Newseum may move to a larger facility in
downtown Washington, D.C.
75,000 sq. ft. facility on Wilson Blvd. in Rosslyn, Va.,
has attracted nearly 1.5 million tourists since it was opened
in 1997 by the Freedom Forum, which was established by Al
Neuharth, the former Gannett chairman.
museum features exhibits that pay tribute to journalists.
Edition, March 22, 2000, Page 7
Edition, March 22, 2000, Page 8
O'Dwyer "Top 50" PR firms is up on the site although we lack the customary proofs
for 15 of the PR operations.
rules are too "onerous" for the firms to follow,
says the Council of PR Firms, which mailed its own rules
to 5,000 PR firms and has now ranked 199, keeping backup
materials to itself for the moment.
what's behind this power play.
biggest PR firms, operating in many cities in the U.S. and
abroad and which are in all or most of the 11 specialty
areas (high-tech, financial, healthcare, etc.), can spend
tens of thousands of dollars and even $100,000+ getting
their "Big Five" CPA firms to do "agreed-upon
procedures" sanctioned by the American Society of CPAs
(confirming number of employees, numbers on income tax statements,
W-3s, leases, etc.).
15 PR operations, almost all of them now subsidiaries of
ad agencies, don't have their own income tax returns and
more than 99% of the PR firms operating in the U.S. (10,000+
according to the Yellow Pages), have such documents readily
high-tech and healthcare specialist firms have only one
office and one specialty so that supplying back-up documents
is easy for them.
than 160 firms have done so this year for the O'Dwyer rankings,
in spite of having an easy way out. They see no "onerous"
problem in doing their rankings and many have told us so.
the few large members of the CPRF have done is solve their
own problem on the backs of the smaller firms.
would have the entire PR counseling field resort to self-supplied
figures despite numerous surveys (including those by PRSA
and Porter Novelli) saying companies and their spokespeople
have low credibility.
Age, which was burned many times by falsified ad agency
billing claims, started requiring CPA statements back in
the 1980s. However, AA stopped getting these statements
and no doubt there was pressure from the agencies. AA's
ranking form, meanwhile, got hugely complicatedsix
pages with 200+ line items.
big ad agencies now want the same carte blanche in the PR
field. However, our form is only one page and requires
documents that are readily available to most firms. These
documents have helped bring credibility to the O'Dwyer PR
rankings for 30 years and we'll continue to ask for them.
Novelli, represented on the CPRF board by Robert Druckenmiller,
could have been No. 1 (by CPRF rules) if it had not spun
off Brodeur last year. PN by itself reported $214.8M in
fees while Brodeur had $70.1M or a total of $284.9. This
would have topped Burson-Marsteller's $274.6M...PN,
which had $45.8M in fees and 451 employees in 1995, has
grown 469% in four years, making it by far the
fastest growing large agency in the history of PR...PN
was called "a marketing firm" by the
Jan. 12, 2000 Wall Street Journal and Druckenmiller has
also said marketing suffuses everything that the firm does...a
number of figures supplied by the CPRF are still being checked
out. One firm reported $7M in fees for 1999 to
the CPRF after being on the O*Dwyer list for 1998 with $2M
in fees and 35 employees...the CPRF board has been
headed since its founding by Dave Drobis of Ketchum.
Both Ketchum and PN are Omnicom agencies.
Harper's Bazaar article (click here for story) saying high
tech PR is using a lot of attractive young women to lure
clients is only the latest on this subject and
there are bound to be more (see 1/12
and 1/26 NLs).
media, the movies, etc., are all pressing the sexual button
as hard as they can because it brings in money. Sports Illustrated*s
"Swimsuit" issue has little to do with sports
or showing off swimwear and lots to do with showing off
bodies. Greenwich Time editor Joseph Pisani, in a column
March 17, noted the impossibility of keeping his four daughters
protected from an ocean of sexually suggestive messages.
PR's reaction to these charges thus far is mostly outrage
that anyone could suggest sexuality plays any role in the
business. PR counselor Sue Bohle, however, has asked the
business not to be defensive on this topic nor ignore the
$398,000 spent on website building by IABC last year is
a prodigious amount and should be explained to
the membership. Web experts tell us a blue chip company
might spend such a figure. Our experience is that high-priced
web companies abound and will charge to the hilt if allowed.
The first quote for an O'Dwyer website was $98,500. An employee
purchased an off-the-shelf web builder for $120 and hired
a web server to host the site for $40 a month. Working gradually
with a web "geek" we built a large site for tens
of thousands, not hundreds of thousands of dollars. If the
IABC is so tight-lipped about its site now, why have a site
at all if major information issues are going to be ducked?
The "let's play our cards close to the vest" attitude
is anathema to the web culture.