Cable and Wireless Communications has stunned the three prominent
agencies pitching for its business by appointing Rapier Stead and Bowden
to run its pounds 25 million consumer launch campaign this autumn.
Rapier - which ranks 150th in Campaign’s top 300 agency list with
above-the-line billings of just pounds 3.23 million - beat Saatchi and
Saatchi, Bartle Bogle Hegarty and HHCL and Partners to one of the
biggest advertising accounts awarded this year.
The brief covers a television, press and poster blitz designed to turn
CWC, which was formed by the merger of Bell Cablemedia, Mercury
Communications, Nynex CableComms and Videotron in March, into a
CWC claims to be the biggest integrated supplier of telecoms and TV
services in the UK and is planning to tackle its main rival, BT, head
on. BT has increased its advertising spend to at least pounds 80 million
a year, and CWC is planning to match that with a total marketing spend
of up to pounds 100 million over the next 12 months.
Ruth Blakemore, the marketing director of CWC, worked with Rapier in her
previous role as the executive director of marketing at Bell
The agency also created CWC’s ’soft launch’ to institutional investors
and business leaders last month (Campaign, 13 June).
Blakemore said she was ’bowled over’ by the quality of work
She commented: ’Our decision to appoint Rapier is a credit to its
approach to the account as well as to its creativity. I’m looking
forward to working closely with Rapier to build a team, comprising
in-house and agency people, across a range of disciplines.’
She added that Rapier would be the main above-the-line agency, but that
other shops might be appointed to different projects.
Jonathan Stead, the chief executive of Rapier, said he was planning to
take on up to ten new people as a result of the win. ’It’s the start of
a long-term relationship - there’s no doubt about that,’ he said.
Michaelides and Bednash will continue to work on media strategy and the
Media Business Group on buying, using International Poster Management