LOUISVILLE, KY: Disagreement over terms of service has led Edelman to walk away from longtime client KFC and decline to take part in a competitive review for the account.
KFC is in the midst of an agency review and expects to select a new firm to handle its national PR by the end of next month, said KFC director of PR Bonnie Warschauer.
Edelman has worked with the company for about 28 years.
KFC "made the decision to have a competitive agency review, and we're disappointed they decided not to take part," Warschauer said.
Richard Edelman, CEO of the firm that bears his family name, said in a statement: "In recent months, we couldn't agree on terms. We're very proud of the award-winning work we've done and the value that Edelman has brought to the KFC brand for nearly three decades."
The fast-food chain has had its share of PR issues in recent years, ranging from negative publicity for ads that tried to position its menu as healthy for children to attacks from animal-welfare groups such as People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, which was outraged by allegations of chicken mistreatment.
Warschauer said KFC's new agency will work on a range of PR efforts.
"I'm looking forward to some great creative ideas," she said. KFC, which is owned by Yum Brands, will use the new agency nationally, though its franchise stores often work with local integrated firms.