Alliance & Leicester calls pitch for pounds 18m direct assignment

The Alliance & Leicester is reviewing its direct marketing agency

roster with pounds 18 million of business up for pitch.



The banking group is approaching agencies to pitch for its credit card

and personal loan business.



Currently, TBWA/GGT handles direct marketing for the credit card

division of A&L and Brann Cirencester works on personal loans.



BHWG Proximity handles direct marketing and some press advertising for

the mortgage service of A&L. This account is not thought to be under

review.



Last year A&L spent pounds 4.8 million on direct mail to back its credit

cards and pounds 3 million on direct mail for its loans. It also spent

pounds 4 million on insert campaigns to back its loans and pounds 6

million on press and inserts for credit cards (MMS).



A&L's advertising has included the series of idents, created by D'Arcy,

to back its sponsorship of Who Wants to be a Millionaire?. They show

past gameshow hosts lamenting the show's success.



Nick Smith, A&L's head of marketing communications, was unavailable for

comment. An A&L spokesman said: 'We do review things from time to

time.



This is not to say that we will change our incumbent agencies but we are

constantly evaluating performance.'



A&L's most recent review was of its creative account last year. It

appointed D'Arcy to the pounds 15 million business, ending a 15-year

relationship with BMP DBB. OMD UK resigned A&L's media account and was

replaced by Manning Gottlieb Media, also last year.



BHWG used characters from the Snoopy cartoons to back A&L's latest

mortgage offers with a pounds 4 million press campaign.



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