Vitro Wins El Pollo Loco Creative Review After Chain Splits with BSSP

By Erik Oster 

Costa Mesa-based grilled chicken chain El Pollo Loco (not to be confused with Gus Fring-run Los Pollos Hermanos) has named San Diego’s Vitro as its creative agency of record following a review managed by AAR Partners. Going forward, Vitro will be responsible for overseeing integrated communications across broadcast, digital, radio and OOH, as well as research, strategy and production.

Butler, Shine, Stern & Partners had served as the brand’s AOR since winning creative duties in 2012 after Goodness Mfg. held the account for less than a year.

“Vitro’s strong vision and creative approach to driving brand distinctiveness and restaurant level performance made them an exciting choice for us,” El Pollo Loco chief marketing officer Ed Valle said in a statement. “Vitro is known across the industry for their innovative business solutions and we are looking forward to working together as we team up to create programs that engage our consumers and continue to drive awareness of our brand.”

“We couldn’t be happier and more excited about the opportunity to work with El Pollo Loco,” added Vitro CEO Tom Sullivan. “They are such an iconic brand with a unique story to tell. Plus…they have the dual benefit of providing some seriously great food and actually cooking in their kitchens! So getting the chance to help shape the brand’s future today is an absolute thrill.”

The news follows Vitro being named AOR for Adidas Golf in June. On the dining front, Vitro lost its Red Robin account earlier in the year, and the chain eventually selected KBS as its AOR following a somewhat secretive review. Vitro was also named AOR for smart home company Vivint and Caribou Coffee in March, one month after announcing the opening of a new office in Austin and hiring GSD&M’s Jake Camozzi and Victor Camozzi to run its creative department. That same month, ASICS shifted its global creative business to 180 Amsterdam and 180LA after working with Vitro for several years.

In 2012, Nielsen reported that the chain had spent $27 million on media the previous year. We don’t currently have more recent numbers on the client’s marketing budgets.

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