Mercedes in talks with agencies for heritage centre

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LONDON - Mercedes-Benz is talking to direct marketing agencies about a brief to launch its brand experience centre.

Called The Mercedes Heritage and Technology Centre, the operation is being built on a 150-acre site at Brooklands in Surrey, where the famous 30s race-track is based. The centre is scheduled to open in May 2006.

The pitch is being handled by the AAR. Nick Ratcliffe, Mercedes' marketing director, is overseeing the project. The company is looking for an agency to develop a communications strategy to promote the centre, mainly with below-the-line work. The incumbent, Claydon Heeley Jones Mason, is expected to pitch.

A customer relationship marketing and DM programme will target Mercedes customers and prospects, to encourage them to visit.

Ratcliffe expects to appoint an agency in January, on completion of a pitch.

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