Omnicom Group Inc. has acquired the Marketing Arm, a Dallas-based sports-marketing company that represents such athletes and corporate clients as Scottie Pippen and Frito-Lay Inc. The deal, reportedly valued at about $10 million, puts the Marketing Arm under the same corporate roof as GMR Marketing, a wholly owned Omnicom subsidiary, and Millsport, another sports-marketing firm in which Omnicom has an equity interest. The growing stable of sports-oriented firms, observers say, could help Omnicom compete against such giants as SFX Entertainment Inc. and IMG.


Budweiser and Nike were the advertising winners during NBC's telecast of the recently completed NBA finals, according to a survey by SAA/Research, a unit of Farmington Hills, Mich.-based Morpace International Inc. In telephone surveys conducted during and after the series won by the San Antonio Spurs, more respondents named the two firms as having the most popular commercials. Honda, Ford and Chevrolet ran ads during the series, SAA/Research spokesman Jim Ahee said, but no automotive ads were among the top vote getters. The "Wild Wild West" movie that opens this week was the most popular among 14 movies advertised during the 14-game series. SAA/Research reported that fan interest in the game waned as the series progressed, but overall interest in the commercials aired was on par with last year's NBA finals, in which superstar Michael Jordan played.

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