McGarrah/Jessee Resigns Johnny Carino’s

DALLAS The Richards Group has been awarded the advertising account of Johnny Carino’s Country Italian restaurant, the client said, after incumbent McGarrah/Jessee resigned the business.

The Dallas shop won creative and media duties following an informal review with Interpublic Group’s Temerlin McClain of Irving, Texas, and independent WestWayne of Atlanta, the client said.

Matt Hood, vice president of marketing for parent company Fired Up, said he wants to position the restaurant as a national brand. “We’re moving from a regional focus to more of a national one,” he said. “The Richards Group has a strong track record and we believe they can help us make that next step.”

Richards is charged with strategic planning, creative, and media planning and buying for the Austin client. Hood said the brand would continue to use existing work until the shop’s first campaign breaks in the first or second quarter of 2004.

Billings are undisclosed.

This story updates a previously posted item.