Nissan global ad pact near
Nissan Motor Co. Ltd. is close to signing a contract that will consolidate its $1.1 billion global advertising account at TBWA Worldwide.
TBWA will manage the account from Tokyo through a joint venture it formed last week with Hakuhodo. Robert LePlae, account director on Nissan at TBWA/Chiat/Day in Playa del Rey, Calif., will relocate to Tokyo to manage the global business.
A spokeswoman for Nissan's Infiniti Division said TBWA will handle advertising globally for both the main Nissan brand and the luxury car division, pending final negotiations and approvals by executives in Tokyo.
Dodge: Adieu to Spider-Man
Say goodbye to superheroes and minivans.
Dodge will end its alliance with Universal Studios at the end of the month, a marketing relationship that lasted only a year. Instead of mingling Dodge product with cartoon characters, such as Spider-Man, the Incredible Hulk and Popeye, Dodge wants to focus marketing efforts on its return to NASCAR racing, said Mike Rosenau, a Dodge product spokesman. Dodge signed a one-year contract with Universal Studios, he said.
Dodge announced in October that it will return to the popular stock-car circuit with its Dodge Intrepid in time for the Daytona 500 on Feb. 18, 2001.
Its brief alliance with Universal Studios featured 'The Dodge Adventure,' a three-day event in June for Dodge owners at the Universal Studios Escape and Islands of Adventure theme parks. Dodge shelled out an estimated $5 million to treat about 12,000 owners and their families at the parks.
Kia launches finance arm
LOS ANGELES - Kia Motors America has launched a captive finance arm with assistance from Primus Financial Services. Kia Financial Services will offer retail and lease financing to Kia customers, and floorplan financing will be available to all Kia dealers
The captive began last week in California, Texas and Florida and will add 35 states on Dec 15. In early 2000, 11 other states will launch upon receiving the required licenses. Until now, Kia dealers had offered financing through Primus, but they did not have their own private-label financing source.
Kia now can offer 60-month financing, low-APR rate programs and balloon programs to customers. Dealers will be offered capitalization loans, mortgage loans, revolving lines of credit and wholesale lines of credit for up to 24 months.
Jag vp Odell moves to Mazda
LOS ANGELES - Stephen Odell will move from his post as vice president of marketing and sales at Jaguar North America to the identical post at Mazda North American Operations. The move reunites Odell with Mazda NAO President Richard Beattie. The two have worked together within Ford Motor Co.