Cable & Wireless is on the verge of appointing a sales house to
handle interactive advertising on its internet sites following a 50 per
cent increase in subscribers to its digital service.
The chosen sales house will receive a brief to sell advertising on C&W’s
main interactive menu, internet sites and e-mail service.
Sales on the 34 content pages - which are already up and running - will
remain the responsibility of service providers, which include British
Airways and Loot. However, C&W is keen to start handling sponsorship on
C&W digital services offer viewers a basic package of channels as well
as internet, e-mail, home shopping, pay-per-view films and a telephone
Following the launch of the digital service last July, C&W has increased
its digital subscriber base to a total of 100,000 homes - an increase of
50 per cent.
The interactive service was first launched in the Manchester region and
is now available in 1.5 million homes in and around C&W’s franchise
These include Cheshire, Surrey and Sussex, Hertfordshire and Kent.
The telecommunications company is aiming to further expand across the UK
in the coming months.
Martin Graham-Scott, head of broadcast public relations at C&W,
commented: ’Our digital service may be similar to BSkyB’s in terms of
its content, but it is a totally different launch when compared with
both ONdigital and Sky. We are rolling out by franchise area and at a
slower pace. There’s no doubt that digital is a motivating factor behind
consumers’ interest in cable.’
C&W’s consumer division manager Adrian Chamberlain said that more than
50 per cent of subscribers who can access the interactive services have
already signed up for the e-mail service.
Meanwhile, Telewest - C&W’s main competitor - has said it plans to
increase its subscriber base to 500,000 over the next 12 months.
Telewest launched its service last October.
NTL, another rival cable operator, will unveil its digital services in
May once improvements in technology allow its systems to go digital.
Separately, NTL will take over C&W’s residential cable assets subject to
government approval. The decision is due on 25 February.