NEWS: Rainey Kelly beats M&C Saatchi for pounds 7m Ionica

Rainey Kelly Campbell Roalfe has defeated M&C Saatchi in a two-way pitch for the pounds 7 million launch of Ionica, the national digital telephone network, set to rival BT when its national roll-out starts on 25 March.

Rainey Kelly Campbell Roalfe has defeated M&C Saatchi in a two-way pitch

for the pounds 7 million launch of Ionica, the national digital

telephone network, set to rival BT when its national roll-out starts on

25 March.



The account has been at BST-BDDP for the past 18 months, but has

switched agencies in time for a heavyweight branding campaign to support

the launch. Pattison Horswell Durden will hold on to the media account.



Robert Campbell, a creative partner at Rainey Kelly, promised: ‘We have

created a genuinely big idea, with a positioning that can be used above

and below the line.’



Ionica was granted a licence in February 1993, soon after the government

ended the telecommunications duopoly between BT and Mercury. It is a

digital network, aimed at households and small businesses, which offers

the benefits of fixed-line systems at a cheaper price.



Derek Laval, the director of business development at Ionica, said: ‘We

want to position Ionica as a major player in this enormous untapped

market.’



Campbell said the pitch had been held ‘at high speed’, and that the

agency’s idea was still being refined and researched. However, he hinted

that Ionica will focus on building a brand in its own right before

moving on to more aggressive, competitive marketing.



Since Mercury Communications has turned its attention to the business

market, BT will be Ionica’s main competitor in the domestic arena.

Ionica is expected to deliver prices 20 per cent lower than those of BT,

and to include services such as call-waiting as standard in its

installation package.



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