MINNEAPOLIS: Weber Shandwick Worldwide has been named PR agency for Grand Excursion 2004, a regional venture to promote tourism along the Upper Mississippi River.
WSW's Minneapolis office bested Padilla Speer Beardsley, also Minneapolis-based, and Iowa-based firm Henry Russell Bruce in three-agency battle for the coveted account (PRWeek, July 29). Sources said the win will mean a low six-figure annual budget.
Andy Scheurer, marketing director for Grand Excursion, wouldn't discuss budget. He selected WSW because it "had some directly comparable event experience, and its success with those efforts was very compelling, he said.
WSW's extensive network of offices also played into the decision.
The agency officially begins its assignment September 1.
Grand Excursion sent an RFP out to 25 firms in mid-June. Twelve responded with proposals. That group was narrowed to the three finalists.
The assignment will involve local, regional, national, and international PR. Local and regional PR efforts will focus on turning out visitors for various events planned along the Upper Mississippi in Minnesota, Iowa, Wisconsin, and Illinois in 2004. National and international efforts will promote tourism in the region.