Arby’s Creative Stays Within Omnicom Group

The Arby’s creative account will remain within Omnicom Group, with the selection of BBDO as lead agency after a review.

BBDO New York succeeds sister shop Merkley + Partners in New York on the brand, which last year spent nearly $130 million in major measured media, according to Nielsen. The new agency’s first work is expected in March.

The other finalists for the business were independent Butler, Shine, Stern & Partners in Sausalito, Calif., and WPP Group’s Young & Rubicam in New York. Havas’ Euro RSCG in Chicago also reached the final round but exited to pursue another fast-food brand, according to sources. EBJ International Consultants in Dallas managed the review, which began in August.

The win reunites BBDO with Bob Kraut, former vp of marketing communications at Pizza Hut, a longtime agency client that split late last year. Kraut is now svp of marketing and advertising at Arby’s in Atlanta.

Media duties were not in play and remain at Interpublic Group’s Initiative in Atlanta.