Carrows, the strug gling 140-unit restaurant chain, has awarded its advertising account to Evans, Hardy & Young in Santa Barbara, Calif., without a review, sources said.
The client had worked with Kovel/ Fuller since 1997. According to Kovel/ Fuller chief creative Lee Kovel, the Culver City, Calif., agency resigned the creative account to avoid a conflict when it was tapped to handle creative and media planning on the $10 million Sizzler business.
The media incumbent could not be determined. It was unclear if that business will be affected or if the agency will also be working with Coco's Bakery Restaurants.
Ad spending has steadily de clined over the last few years, from $4 million-plus in 1999 to $1.5 million in 2000. Recent ad efforts for Carrows, which operates units in California and other western states, have primarily revolved around radio promotions. A budget for the forthcoming campaign could not be deter mined.
At press time, neither the client nor the agency re turned phone calls.
The appointment of EH&Y follows an upper-management shift at the Irvine, Calif., family restaurant chain. In May, Jeff Campbell, who has held management posts at Bur ger King, Pepsi-Cola and Johnny Rockets, replaced David Devoy as Carrows president and CEO.
Carrows is owned by Advantica Res taurant Group, which also owns Coco's and the Denny's chain. The Spartanburg, S.C.- based parent has been trying to sell Carrows and Co co's to emerge from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.
In landing the account, EH&Y is reunited with a former client—the agency had worked with Carrows and Coco's in the mid-1990s.
Other EH&Y clients include Chi Chi's Mexican Restaurants, the California Egg Commission, Triumph Motorcycles and the Idaho Potato Commission. The shop has roughly $50 million in billings.