New PHD looks to have beaten Motive in the battle for British
Midland’s lucrative buying account, despite Motive’s parent company
Bartle Bogle Hegarty winning the creative task.
The creative and media accounts were held by Edinburgh’s Faulds
Advertising, but with British Midland moving the creative account to BBH
it looks certain to move the buying and planning accounts too.
New PHD managing director John Wilkins refused to comment, but it is
believed that the agency has won the pitch to handle the buying, while
MSC, a joint venture between New PHD and Partners BDDH, will handle the
The buying account was worth more than pounds 5 million in 1998, but
looks likely to increase as the airline takes on British Airways and
Virgin to become the country’s third major transatlantic carrier.
The airline is believed to be considering a total re-branding including
a name change, and the ads will probably focus on the theme of ’major
change’. British Midland currently has 50 planes currently flying to 30
European destinations, but it is in the running for a number of Heathrow
transatlantic slots and plans to join the Star Alliance group of major
The campaign will run across all the major media, according to Duncan
Bird, group director at BBH - although he said it was too early to talk
about the specific strategy.