NEWS: Pinnell poised to take over at Shell

Raoul Pinnell, the former NatWest marketing director who lost his job three months ago, has been lined up for a top job at Shell.

Raoul Pinnell, the former NatWest marketing director who lost his job

three months ago, has been lined up for a top job at Shell.

He will join the oil giant next month as successor to Mike Kesztenbaum,

Shell International’s branding and marketing communications director,

who has moved to a new position in Greece.

The news closely follows last week’s reports that Shell has asked three

of its roster agencies, Ogilvy and Mather, J. Walter Thompson and

Publicis, to pitch for its pounds 60 million European creative account,

previously handled on a country-by-country basis.

David Pirret, Shell International’s head of marketing services,

confirmed the appointment. However, he insisted that Pinnell would have

no direct involvement in the agency review.

Pinnell fell victim to an extensive restructuring of NatWest’s senior

management in September when it was announced that he would work on

‘special projects’ for Simon Lewis, the bank’s director of corporate


Pinnell moved from the Prudential to NatWest in August 1994 and was the

first person to take marketing responsibility for the entire retail

banking operation.

His arrival precipitated the axing of the bank’s long-running ‘here to

make life easier’ campaign which, according to Pinnell, could not live

up to its claims.

He took the bank’s advertising off television for six months,

masterminded its rebranding from National Westminster Bank to NatWest

and its repositioning as ‘more than just a bank’.

During Pinnell’s tenure, the bank’s agency roster was halved and there

was a substantial cut in above-the-line spend to focus on below-the-line


Pinnell also pioneered a number of third-party alliances and was one of

the prime movers in setting up the Tesco Clubcard Plus scheme.


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