DraftFCB Named Lead Agency for Aramark

Struggling Interpublic Group Network Scores Second Account Win This Month

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It's operating without a CEO, yet DraftFCB has managed to pick up the account for foodservice and uniform supplier Aramark after a review. It marks the marketer's first-ever agency of record relationship.

Up until now, Aramark, which claimed $13.5 billion in revenues in 2012, worked with a host of agencies on a project basis. The Philadelphia-based company held a review to consolidate the work at one agency to supplement the company's internal efforts. DraftFCB will be handling the company's brand marketing going forward, as well as business-to-business duties.

"We were seeking a partner with the creativity and strategic thinking to complement our business strategy," said Frank Mendicino, president-strategic assets and chief strategy officer at Aramark in a statement. "The DraftFCB team displayed that and more, demonstrating the best grasp of our vision for Aramark plus the reach of a strong global network."

It's the second piece of good news this month for the agency, which has been a problem spot for parent Interpublic. Earlier in August, DraftFCB retained the Kmart creative account after a protracted review, plus it added the fashion marketing portion of the account to its roster.

That it's winning business in the absence of a leader is surprising; in an unusual situation, the agency has been operating without a CEO for close to six months because its incoming leader has been held to a noncompete agreement by former employer WPP.

DraftFCB in March named Y&R's Carter Murray as its next CEO, but he is not permitted to join the agency until September. Mr. Carter will face a challenge in replacing the revenue lost in recent years from major account defections like MillerCoors and SC Johnson. DraftFCB still works with Yum Brands' KFC and Taco Bell, one of its largest creative accounts, but DraftFCB this year has seen significant Taco Bell assignments migrate to sibling agency Deutsch, Los Angeles.

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