Sean Lowe's The Bachelor selection is official.

ABC has formally announced Lowe will star as the Bachelor in the franchise's upcoming seventeenth edition.

Production for the reality dating series' next installment has already begun and it is scheduled to premiere in January 2013.

Lowe competed on Emily Maynard's most recent edition of The Bachelorette.  He finished third in line for her heart behind runner-up Arie Luyendyk Jr. and winner Jef Holm, and his departure marked one of the most emotional moments of the season.

While Lowe was billed as an insurance agent from Dallas, TX during his The Bachelorette participation, ABC is now calling the 28-year-old Kansas State graduate "a successful Dallas businessman and entrepreneur" who has recently committed to "his new enterprise, owning and running an upscale, custom furniture business." 

E! News reported earlier this month that ABC had decided on Lowe. "[It's] pretty much done. Sean is our choice," a source told the website at the time. "I think we finally got everyone to sign off. We're not in production for another couple weeks."

Lowe told reporters during a July conference call he wasn't sure whether it would be a good idea for him to accept the potential opportunity to star on The Bachelor considering his experience on The Bachelorette had ended in heartbreak.

"It would be a difficult decision if they were to ask me only because it was so emotionally taxing and I don't know if I could go through that again," he explained.
"But on the flip side of the coin, I understand that the process works. I believe in the process, and ultimately if I were to find my wife, it would certainly all be worth it. It's just a little difficult to think about right now. So, I'm not sure, but they'd have to ask first. So, I don't even know if I'm going to have to make that decision."
In addition to Lowe, the network had also reportedly considered Luyendyk Jr., Roberto Martinez from Ali Fedotowsky's season of The Bachelorette and Olympic swimmer and gold medalist Ryan Lochte for the position.