Droga5 Scores TracFone

NEW YORK Publicis Groupe-backed Droga5 has added creative chores for TracFone Wireless, a pre-paid cellular phone provider, the client has confirmed.

The work had been handled in-house for the past 18 months; the client’s last lead creative shop was independent Bernstein-Rein in Kansas City, Mo.

The Miami-based telecom spent $25 million in measured media between January and November 2006, according to Nielsen Monitor-Plus.

Offline and online media buying plus search marketing duties—which were not in play—remain with Aegis Group’s Carat, which added those assignments last year.

TracFone sells prepaid cell phones and airtime, mainly targeting Latin-American consumers. The company claims to be the largest independent provider of prepaid wireless services in the U.S.

Droga5 in New York added the assignment following a review; other contenders were not disclosed.

David Droga, a former worldwide creative director at Publicis, formed the shop last year.

The young agency has worked for General Electric and other clients, but is best known for its Cannes Cyber Grand Prix-winning effort for Marc Ecko’s viral film Still Free. Droga5 tapped into the Web’s ability to spread messages virally with a video. The supposed defacing of the president’s plane proved realistic enough that the Pentagon clarified that incident never happened and the stunt landed in the national media.