February 25, 1999 — Lowe’s Begins $100 Million Broadcast Advertising Agency Review
North Wilkesboro, N.C. — Lowe’s Companies, Inc., the nation’s second largest retailer of home improvement products, today began an agency review for its $100 million broadcast advertising account.
Lowe’s asked 16 advertising agencies, including W. B. Doner & Company of Southfield, Mich., agency of record since 1993, to submit proposals. The review is closed to the 16 agencies, and the company will not accept proposals from other candidates. The field will be narrowed next week to five candidates who will be visited by a team from Lowe’s. Finalists from the visit will be asked to handle a creative assignment for which they will be compensated.
The agencies were selected on the basis of market specialization, range of services, media experience, and the ability to service the account nationwide. agencyfinder.com (c.q.), an Internet and off-line agency selection service owned by Business Partnering International, Ltd. of Richmond, VA., assisted in the selection process. The firm was able to identify a small group of agencies that met the selection criteria through data from more than 3,000 international agency offices stored in its system.
Lowe’s, best known as Lowe’s Home Improvement Warehouse, serves more than four million do-it-yourself and commercial business customers weekly in 487 stores in 27 states. Fiscal 1998 sales totaled $12.24 billion, a 20.8 percent increase over fiscal 1997 sales.
The 52-year-old company plans to open more than 80 new stores this year, expanding to three new states. Lowe’s also announced last year its intention to acquire Eagle Hardware and Garden of Renton, Washington, adding nearly $1 billion in sales generated by 36 stores in 10 states.
“Lowe’s aggressive expansion program, coupled with new initiatives in branded products, marketing and promotional activities, has had a tremendous impact on our advertising needs,” said Dave Tyler, vice president of Advertising for Lowe’s. “As the company continues to succeed and grow, we see a need to change our centralized approach to advertising in favor of a more decentralized strategy that allows us to react more quickly to a changing local marketplace.”