NEWS: Vodafone refuses to be influenced by Orange tactics

Vodafone has ruled out the use of retaliatory advertising in the wake of Orange’s court victory over it last week and a subsequent triumphant ad campaign.

Vodafone has ruled out the use of retaliatory advertising in the wake of

Orange’s court victory over it last week and a subsequent triumphant ad

campaign.



Mike Caldwell, Vodafone’s manager of corporate communications, said: ‘We

were disappointed to lose the case, but believe it was the right thing

to do.’ He confirmed that no advertising response is planned.



In its unsuccessful case, Vodafone claimed that Orange’s autumn campaign

- which made a direct comparison between the companies’ tariffs -

contained malicious falsehoods, was misleading and infringed the

Vodafone trademark.



Orange’s weekend ad blitz through WCRS consisted of three executions

referring to the court case, and claimed a victory for consumers as well

as for Orange.



Cellnet, the third major player in the mobile telecoms market, also

refused to be influenced by Orange’s tactics. It was on the losing side

of a tussle with Orange last week, when the Advertising Standards

Authority upheld complaints made by Orange against Cellnet’s use of

price comparison in ads. A Cellnet spokesman said: ‘It is best to battle

it out in the market rather than in the courts.’



Orange faces a further challenge as it prepares to launch in Northern

Ireland next year. The company has admitted that a sub-brand may have to

be invented to avoid the political associations that ‘Orange’ carries

in the region. An alternative name has yet to be chosen, but when plans

were being laid for the original launch in 1994, ‘Pecan’ came a close

second to ‘Orange’ as the preferred designation.



Live Issue, p10



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