Verizon Selects Burrell Communications Group For Its Brand Launch Advertising

NEW YORK - Verizon Communications has selected Burrell Communications Group as the advertising agency to handle its brand launch campaign.

The campaign, which will be launched in the fall, will focus on Verizon's commitments to its customers and the qualities and products that make Verizon the leading communications company in the world.

Verizon, the national communications company formed by the merger of Bell Atlantic and GTE, had asked five of its existing ad agencies earlier this summer for ideas on branding the newly merged company.

"Burrell demonstrated a very thorough understanding of our business and our customers and presented its ideas in a very strategic and creative way," said Janet Keeler, Verizon senior vice president for marketing services and brand management. "We believe their concepts and execution on those ideas will help build the Verizon brand."

Keeler noted that this assignment is for a strategic brand project for Verizon - one that stresses the quality and reliability of Verizon products and services, and articulates what the Verizon brand represents. In August, Verizon conducted a name change ad campaign to alert its customers and the general public that the name of the newly merged company is Verizon. Burrell will continue in its role as Verizon's ad agency for the African American market, and all other roster agencies will continue in their assignments.

"We are very excited to have been selected to launch Verizon's new branding campaign," said Thomas J. Burrell, chairman and CEO of Burrell Communications Group. "Our advertising will represent the consumer's first introduction to the essence and character of the new company."

Burrell Communications Group has been a Verizon roster agency since 1995. Founded in Chicago in 1971 by Thomas J. Burrell, the company provides its clients with advertising, public relations, consumer promotions, event and street marketing services. Burrell formed a strategic alliance in 1999 with Publicis S.A., the world's fifth largest advertising network.

Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ), formed by the merger of Bell Atlantic and GTE, is one of the world's leading providers of communications services. Verizon companies are the largest providers of wireline and wireless communications in the United States, with more than 100 million access lines and more than 25 million wireless customers. A Fortune 10 company with more than 260,000 employees and approximately $60 billion in 1999 revenues, Verizon's global presence extends to 40 countries in the Americas, Europe, Asia and the Pacific. For more information on Verizon, visit www.verizon.com.