Wieden+Kennedy New York (WKNY) is the big winner of the nine-month McDonald's review awarding lead creative duties to the independent shop.
Omnicom Group's DDB served as the incumbent, with WKNY prevailing over two other Omnicom finalist shops: TBWA/Chiat/Day Los Angeles and Adam & Eve/DDB.
WKNY will oversee all creative responsibilities for the fast-food chain's largest market, with more than 14,000 restaurants. The shop will begin work in the next month to plan for 2020.
“McDonald’s has created some of the most iconic branding, advertising and marketing initiatives the world
has ever known, and we look forward to working across the company and agency network to continue this rich tradition," stated Neal Arthur, managing director, WKNY.
WKNY was ultimately chosen for its strong strategic and creative output and its successful track record in developing "provocative content" for relationships between customers and well-known brands, including Nike, Bud Light, Coca-Cola (for Sprite and Vitamin Water) and Delta, reports McDonald's.
“Globally, we are trying to evolve our creative, like the rest of the customer experience," stated Colin Mitchell, senior vice president, global marketing, McDonald's. "This move allows us to push our vision for modern marketing in this very important market."
While this partnership marks a significant win for W+K — and independent agencies overall — the agency's team will be overseeing less business than in previous years. The restaurant chain is moving away from a consolidated approach to national and local initiatives with more local agency partners.
Although Omnicom's stock immediately dropped nearly 1% upon news of the account loss, DDB, under the bespoke We Are Unlimited, developed specifically to service this business three years ago, will continue to handle some duties under what McDonald's calls "operational excellence," such as digital marketing.