In one of the biggest ever account consolidations, local telecoms giant Verizon Communications has handed nearly all its consumer and business-oriented creative work, worth $400-$500 million annually, to Interpublic’s Lowe Lintas & Partners Worldwide in New York.

The surprise award, which came without a review, makes the telecoms company one of Lowe’s five largest clients. Dropped from Verizon’s roster are Boston’s Arnold Worldwide, the Lord Group in New York (a joint venture between Dentsu and Young & Rubicam) and True North-owned Temerlin McClain in Irving, Texas.

“We've been through a lot of mergers, and every three years we end up with more and more resources,” commented Verizon’s senior vp–brand management and marketing services Janet Keeler. “You don't do anything efficiently and effectively when you find yourself in that situation.”

The selection of Lowe, which has not worked for Verizon before, brings most of the telecoms firm’s marketing duties within Interpublic’s ambit. Lowe’s sibling unit Draft Worldwide in New York already shares media buying duties with Zenith Media, while the same city’s Deutsch, recently acquired by Interpublic, handles the Verizon Information Services account. “Just about all the Verizon business will be under the IPG umbrella,” continued Keeler. “It’s not an accident.”

Verizon’s other agencies which remain unaffected by the consolidation include Chicago’s Burrell Communications Group (marketing to the black population) and La Agencia de Orsi & Asociados in Los Angeles (Hispanic marketing).

News source: New York Times