* Automotive services provider Midas has honed to four the nine agencies competing for its $60 million US creative and strategic business. The surviving quartet comprises Cliff Freeman & Partners and Kaplan Thaler Group (both of New York); Square One (Dallas); and Hill, Holliday, Connors, Cosmopulos of Boston working in concert with Moroch & Associates in Dallas. Former incumbent, Chicago’s Euro RSCG McConnaughy Tatham did not participate in the review but Carat North America in New York continues to handle media planning/buying.

* Creative and media duties for Ralston Purina’s Purina One high-end dog and cat-food brands are up for review – confined, insiders say, to the firm’s existing roster shops. Worth an estimated $30m, the business is currently handled by Lowe Lintas & Partners in New York. Ralston is now owned by Nestlé.

* London-headquartered Allied Domecq Spirits last week viewed presentations by the four agencies shortlisted to handle its $15m Sauza tequila account in the US. The finalists are: Crispin Porter & Bogusky (Miami), dRush (New York), Goodby, Silverstein & Partners (San Francisco) and Modernista! (Boston). Former agency Bates USA did not re-pitch.

News source: AdWeek.com; New York Times