Competition in the credit card market is set to intensify later this
year as MBNA International, one of the biggest credit card operators in
the US, talks to advertising agencies about a pounds 6 to pounds 9
million drive to highlight its low interest rates.
MBNA is one of a new breed of American card operators offering cheap
interest rates and special deals. It presents a direct threat to
established brands such as Barclaycard and Mastercard.
The Chester-based subsidiary of the Maryland Bank of America has been
operating in the UK for three years, and currently uses Leagas Delaney
for work on its Gold Card, although, according to Register-MEAL, this
has amounted to little more than pounds 200,000 to date.
Now, however, MBNA, under the auspices of its business development
director, Katie McEntee, is talking to media and creative agencies about
a major push to attract more customers.
McEntee was unavailable to comment as Campaign went to press.
The pounds 40 billion UK credit card industry has proved to be a major
draw for US card operators because this country’s relatively high
interest rates on cards offers lucrative margins.
The cut-price operator, Advanta, came into the market earlier this year
and was followed by the People’s Bank, based in Connecticut. Earlier
entrants to the market include MBNA and another US organisation, the