NEW YORK -- Chrysler Group is reaching out to as many as 10 advertising agencies -- ranging from Crispin Porter & Bogusky, WPP's Grey and Publicis Groupe's Hal Riney -- as part of a search for new creative ideas, say executives familiar with the situation.
Should Grey prevail, it would put two competing automakers in WPP's holding-company garage: Chrysler and Ford Motor Co. Not long ago, the idea of two domestic automakers at one holding company would have been unthinkable.
As first reported by Advertising Age, a sister publication of Automotive News, embattled Chrysler, in the wake of its alignment with Fiat S.p.A., is searching for "fresh and creative ways" to approach its marketing.
This prompted the company to reach beyond longtime shop BBDO Worldwide for the first time in years. BBDO won national and regional creative duties for the Dodge, Jeep and Chrysler brands in a consolidation back in 2000.
Agency representatives either declined to comment or couldn't be immediately reached.
A Chrysler Group spokeswoman would say only that the company has reached out to "a select group" of agencies, declining to confirm which shops or how many.
She did say that Michael Accavitti -- who moved to CEO of the Dodge brand after Chrysler's emergence from bankruptcy -- is leading the process. He is head of the new company's worldwide marketing organization.