February 28, 2000 — PiNGPoNG.CoM drops FCB, Switches $30 Million Account to Doner
Fountain Valley, CA — Doner, Newport Beach, has taken over an estimated $30 million national advertising campaign for Fountain Valley-based Internet startup PiNGPoNG.CoM following the Internet company’s split this month with FCB Worldwide in Costa Mesa. Two months after it selected FCB as its first advertising agency, PingPong has parted ways with the OC ad shop citing “fundamental creative differences.”
“They had developed some creative specs for us, but no ad work,” said David Kwan, an executive at PingPong. The company, which has more than 20 employees, was formed by a group of former Kingston Technology executives. Its products are designed to make using the Internet easier.
Jim Harrington, FCB’s executive vice president and general manager, said the agency and PingPong “agreed it was not in either of our best interests to work together” We just flat-out disagreed about how to position this product, so it didn’t make sense to continue. It makes more sense to work with someone that has a similar position as they do. We didn’t agree on how to position it.”
When PingPong was shopping its business a few months ago, the company interviewed Doner, FCB and three other semi-finalists: Townsend & O’Leary in Irvine; J. Walter Thompson USA in San Francisco; and Arnold Ingalls Moranville in San Francisco.
Doner, which set up shop in OC more than a year ago to handle its client Mazda North America’s $250 million account, has added several non-automotive accounts to its roster, including Intellifutures. Doner has also moved its Long Drug Stores account here to defend it in a review.
The agency switch will not delay PingPong’s planned mid-2000 national advertising and product launch that will include interactive, print and online advertising, Kwan said.