RBOS calls review of £10m creative account

The Royal Bank of Scotland has launched a review of its £10 million account, currently held by Faulds Advertising, as it seeks to build the profile of its core brand.

The bank is in the process of shortlisting agencies to pitch for the business as it seeks to allay concerns that the Royal Bank of Scotland is seen increasingly as a holding company rather than a banking service in its own right.

The hostile takeover of NatWest for £21 billion in 2000 made the Royal Bank of Scotland one of the key players in UK high-street banking. The move triggered a shake-up of advertising arrangements at NatWest, with M&C Saatchi wrenching the creative account from TBWA/ London and the Royal Bank of Scotland's media incumbent, MediaCom, ousting Starcom Motive after a review.

MediaCom's hold on the combined planning and buying account is not believed to be affected by the review. It is not known whether TBWA and M&C Saatchi are among those shortlisted to pitch for the creative account.

The Royal Bank of Scotland further expanded its advertising roster in November last year when Wieden & Kennedy London was appointed to handle its RBS Advanta credit card following a pitch against St Luke's, Clemmow Hornby Inge and Partners BDDH.

Faulds survived the creative shake-up that followed the acquisition and launched a television campaign, with the strapline "Make it happen", in November. However, the Royal Bank of Scotland will be keen to offset its key rival, Bank of Scotland, which has taken steps to win high-street share since Halifax bought it.

Last October, Bank of Scotland's interest rate on current accounts was raised from 0.1 per cent to 4 per cent, bringing it in line with the Halifax.

Delaney Lund Knox Warren & Partners, the Halifax incumbent, was subsequently appointed to Bank of Scotland's £5 million account following a three-way pitch.