SAN FRANCISCO: Fleishman-Hillard has dropped out of Sun Microsystems' agency review after being named one of five finalists.
Curt Kundred, Fleishman's West Coast president, confirmed that the agency had backed out, citing "a number of factors." Although Kundred declined to elaborate, he did confirm that concern with the dynamic bidding portion of the review was a factor. Fleishman was an incumbent agency.
The finalists will use an online marketplace to bid for Sun's business. The process works similar to a reverse auction, where the lowest bid - but not the bidder - will be continually displayed, allowing agencies to compete downward.
Karen Kahn, Sun's director of worldwide PR, said she would not replace Fleishman among the finalists, narrowing the field to four - Bite Communications, Citigate Cunningham, MWW Group, and Ruder Finn.
Bite and Cunningham are the only incumbents in the review. Ogilvy PR and CHEN PR, also incumbents, did not make it to the finals.