Eagle Star, the insurance giant, has confirmed Ogilvy and Mather as the
agency of record on its main pounds 7 million ad account, ending months
of speculation that it was on the brink of losing the business.
However, the direct marketing side of the account - worth an estimated
pounds 4 million - will now be handled by Grey Integrated.
Tom Bury, O&M’s managing director, sparked the speculation earlier this
year when he admitted that the BAT Industries-owned company had been
considering moving its account to Grey Advertising, which handles BAT’s
smaller insurance brand, Allied Dunbar. At the time, Bury acknowledged:
‘After the success of the Allied Dunbar ads, Grey may be mounting a
pitch for Eagle Star’ (Campaign, 1 March).
BAT set up an internal review in June to decide whether its three
financial services brands - Eagle Star, Allied Dunbar and the fund-
management company, Threadneedle - should be marketed and advertised
separately or whether advertising could be consolidated under one roof.
The review was conducted by Grey Integrated (Campaign, 14 June) and is
understood to have involved the preparation of creative work for the
main account by Grey Advertising.
A spokesman for Eagle Star said: ‘O&M continues to work on the business
and there is no intention to work with Grey Advertising. We are now
working with O&M on new work due to break before the end of the year.’
The campaign will be backed by a spend of pounds 3 million.
No-one at O&M was available to comment.
Earlier this week, BAT announced the re-organisation of its UK
businesses under an umbrella group called British and American Financial
Services. The move has fuelled speculation that the company will examine
the viability of centralising the media planning and buying for the
brands with a single media company. Eagle Star’s media is handled by the
Network, while Allied Dunbar is with John Ayling and Associates.