$50 Mil. T.G.I. Friday’s Heads to Deutsch

NEW YORK The T.G.I. Friday’s restaurant chain has moved its creative and media account to Interpublic Group’s Deutsch/LA from IPG sister shop McCann-Erickson, the client has confirmed. There was no review. Estimated annual ad spending is $50 million.

“Based on our overall strategic objectives, there was mutual agreement that a change in marketing partner would be appropriate,” said Tom Koenigsberg, vice president of marketing and R&D for T.G.I. Friday’s, in a statement. He did not elaborate.

Differences over creative direction at least in part precipitated the split between the client and New York-based McCann, sources said. A McCann representative referred questions to client officials, who did not return calls.

“Deutsch has an impressive track record of driving retail sales, developing breakthrough creative and creating viable and integrated marketing efforts,” Koenigsberg said in the statement. The shop’s Deutsch/LA operation is in Marina del Rey, Calif.

McCann handled the Dallas-based company’s account for a year and had fashioned ads using the themeline “Eat what you love. Love where you eat. Friday’s.” The chain has about 700 restaurants nationwide.

This story updates an item posted earlier today.