Discover, one of the biggest credit card brands in the US, is set
to appoint Leo Burnett for a UK launch later this year, which will be
spearheaded by a major advertising and direct marketing campaign.
The budget for the launch has not yet been decided but it is expected to
match the pounds 10-pounds 15 million spend of its UK rivals. As well as
targeting consumers, it will include a significant drive to persuade
retailers and restaurants to accept the Discover card.
The credit card’s agency in the US is DDB. But its London shop, BMP DDB,
was unable to take the account due to a conflict with the pounds 15
million Barclaycard business, which the agency retained last year after
a four-way pitch.
Discover is thought to have considered other agencies in the DDB
network, including Griffin Bacal, before opting for Leo Burnett.
Discover appointed a new president and chief operating officer, David
Nelms, last month. Nelms joined from MBNA where he was chief executive
for seven years and masterminded the recent launch of the cut-price
credit card in the UK.
At the time, Nelms revealed that Discover, which is more widely accepted
than American Express in the US, would be launched in ’at least one
additional country’ in 1999. Discover also provides debit and smart
cards and has invested in online banking.
Discover was launched in the US in 1985 as a ’brash newcomer’, targeting
the market duopoly of Visa and Mastercard. Its success means that it is
now one of the more established brands.