Compaq consolidates £20m DM agency roster

LONDON (Campaign) Compaq, the world's biggest PC manufacturer, has cut back its 14-strong UK below-the-line agency roster, splitting its £20 million account between just two agencies.

Finex, one of Compaq's roster direct marketing shops, will be joined by Claydon Heeley Jones Mason, which was not previously on the roster but went through a tendering process to win the business.

It is thought that Compaq wanted to reduce the size of the roster to create cost savings and to encourage more consistently branded work.

Several small design and promotional agencies have worked on the Compaq roster, as well as IMP and Banks Hoggins O'Shea/FCB, which won Compaq's corporate branding work last year and handles a chunk of Compaq's pan-European below-the-line advertising activity. It is unclear if it will continue to produce this below-the-line work.

The appointment of Claydon Heeley marks a reversal of fortunes for the agency, which lost the Compaq direct marketing account last year. Its sister agency, Jones Mason Barton Antenen, had won the account before the merger with Claydon Heeley but it lost it after a global consolidation into FCB.

The below-the-line account includes direct mail, inserts, web activity, responsive press and promotional marketing. Details of how the account will be split are unknown.

Compaq recently moved its pan-European media account out of OMD and into Initiative Media.

Recent advertising for Compaq has attempted to focus on the company's reputation as a supplier of e-business services.