Applebee's Hands Creative Account to McCann

IPG Shop Saw Off TBWA in Review

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- Applebee's has awarded Interpublic Group of Cos.' McCann Erickson creative duties after a review of its $175 million advertising account, according to people familiar with the account.
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The $175 million account, previously handled by DraftFCB, will stay within Interpublic Group of Cos.

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Under New CMO, Chain Opens Review for $175 Million Ad Account


The win is a quick comeback for McCann, which recently lost billings on the five brands Johnson & Johnson shifted to other agencies earlier this month. Despite the loss of fast-feeder Wendy's $300 million account in January, McCann can consider itself on a relative roll with Verizon's May $1.9 billion consolidation at the agency and the more recent win of Weight Watcher's $65 million account.

IPG retains billings
For Interpublic, the account move from DraftFCB -- which did not participate in the review -- means that the revenue (and media billings) will at least stay within the holding company.

Omnicom Group's TBWA/Chiat/Day was the other finalist in the review.

Chain under fire
The restaurant chain placed its creative account into review shortly after naming George Williams chief marketing officer earlier this year. The company had been under fire from shareholders for poor management and share performance.

Both agencies declined to comment. Applebee's expected to formally announce the win soon and did not wish to comment beforehand.