Ogilvy in final three for Ulster Bank task

Ulster Bank has shortlisted three agencies to compete for its £5 million above-the-line account.

Ogilvy Advertising's Dublin agency has made the cut, as have two independent Irish agencies: AV Browne from Belfast and the incumbent, the Dublin-based Chemistry.

Ulster Bank is owned by the Royal Bank of Scotland and includes the UK mortgage provider First Active, whose advertising will also be included in the remit.

Chemistry's last work for Ulster ran in February and positioned it as a friendly bank that puts its customers first. It featured people spreading the message about how they were able to switch their account without paying transaction fees.

It followed a series of executions that ran across Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland in 2006, highlighting the hassles of additional bank charges. One ad featured a waiter presenting a diner with a bill laden with additional charges, while another presented loyalty issues through a script that saw a cafe waitress flirting with a customer until the moment she realised that he was no longer a new prospect.

Despite the strategy, it was revealed earlier this month that the Office of Fair Trading is currently investigating complaints that personal banking customers in Northern Ireland are typically charged 21 times more than those in the rest of the UK.

The review, which began in December, included UK agencies and is being handled by Creative Brief.