First Direct is gearing up to review its pounds 6 million media account
out of Pattison Horswell Durden.
The rethink is understood to have been prompted by a number of factors,
notably the decision of the fellow PHD client, the Prudential, to branch
out from life insurance and into direct banking.
The move this autumn will make it a head-on competitor to First Direct.
The review has been given added impetus by Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO’s
decision to purchase PHD to form New PHD (Campaign, last week). AMV
already handles the Prudential’s creative account, so the business will
now effectively be handled on a full-service basis.
The First Direct creative account, which is handled by WCRS, is believed
to be unaffected by the review.
Mike Phillipson, advertising manager at First Direct, and David
Pattison, managing partner of PHD, declined to comment.
Separately, Andrew Rob-ertson, the managing director of AMV, made it
clear this week that New PHD will be forced to resign its Lil-lets
account if a solution to the potential conflict with AMV’s Tambrands
business cannot be found.
Robertson commented: ‘Tambrands is the priority client. If it comes to
the push, Lil-lets will have to go.’