It’s About Frickin’ Time!

Wendy’s Ads to Tribute Dave Thomas
Wendy’s will honor its late founder, Dave Thomas, by adding a reference to him in commercials next month and putting posters of him in restaurants.
Wendy’s International Inc. will describe food as being “prepared Dave’s way” in the commercials touting the slogan “It’s better here,” which promote the low-priced “Super Value Menu,” company spokesman Bob Bertini said Monday.
Thomas, who died of liver cancer in January, was the company’s premier pitchman in a 12-year advertising campaign that featured his folksy, sometimes self-effacing humor.
The advertising campaign is a way to acknowledge customers’ connection to Thomas, Bertini said. He said Wendy’s has no plans to use Thomas’ image or voice in the new commercials.
Roger Blackwell, a marketing professor at Ohio State University and a retailing consultant, said the new ads will be effective.
“This is an example of customers wanting to see Dave because of the great respect he had among consumers,” he said.
The new commercials will build on current ones portraying Dublin ó the upscale Columbus suburb of 30,000 people that is headquarters to Wendy’s ó as a friendly, multiracial community.
The new commercials will air mid-June, Bertini said.
Jack Russo, an analyst with A.G. Edwards & Sons Inc. in St. Louis, said it’s to early to tell how the new commercials will affect the company.
“They clearly had success with him before,” Russo said. “He was a good spokesman for the firm. You just can’t forget that overnight.”
Wendy’s, the nation’s third-biggest hamburger chain, has nearly 6,100 restaurants in the United States, Canada and other countries and more than 2,000 Tim Hortons, a Canadian-based chain acquired in 1996.
Share of Wendy’s stock closed Monday at $37.49, down 25 cents, on the New York Stock Exchange.
Guess where I’m going for lunch today!