MmO2 hires Agency Republic for online branding business

MmO2, the mobile communications brand that includes BT Cellnet's

operations, has appointed Agency Republic to handle its £5 million

online branding account.



The appointment comes in the same week that mmO2 confirmed its

commitment to spending £150 million on the above-the-line launch

of its brand across Europe through the BBDO network.



Agency Republic, which is backed by Omnicom, will act as mmO2's lead

global online agency. It won the business after a pitch against Zinc,

Rufus Leonard and Wheel.



BT Cellnet will be officially rebranded as O2 on 19 November as part of

BT's demerger of mmO2, which was previously known as BT Wireless.



Agency Republic will create and manage the O2 brand across channels

including web, mobile phones and interactive television.



It will also work alongside BBDO, Lambie-Nairn and with local digital

agencies on bringing consistent branding to mmO2's customers in other

European countries.



Martin Brooks, the co-managing director of Agency Republic, said: "In

the short term we will be creating a brand online and then turning it

into something consumers can interact with. Creating the brand online

involves work on what the site, e-mails and banners will look like."



Will Harris, the vice-president of marketing of mmO2, said: "O2 is the

first mobile brand of the post-internet age. We have expectations for

branding above the line and below the line and need experts to drive

this through."



The BBDO appointment follows O2's decision to cancel a pitch that was

under way through Agency Insight.