Who Will Get JC Penney’s $30 Million+ Account?

Speculation ran rampant over who would succeed Dieste Harmel & Partners as JC Penney’s lead Hispanic agency following an announcement on Wednesday evening that the two companies were parting ways.

Estimates value the account at $31-$33 million, with the bulk of that figure—over $30 million—going directly into TV. According to Portada Ad-tracking, JC Penney invested approximately $950,000 in Hispanic ROP in the first nine months of 2007, with a very modest amount invested in preprint advertising.

According to a release issued by Dieste Harmel & Partners, the decision not to renew their contract was made by them in December, although JC Penney’s Multicultural Marketing Director Olivia Vela insists that the decision was made by the retailer.

JC Penney reports that the agency review will be limited to a small number of prospects; so far, only the independent NYC-based agency The Vidal Partnership, and Conill— Saatchi & Saatchi’s Hispanic branch—have been named as candidates.

According to JC Penney executives, the account will be awarded in March.