The Ogilvy Group has picked up the pounds 50 million five-year
contract to launch a new online bill payment system, Clear Money, across
Ogilvy & Mather pitched against J. Walter Thompson and Leo Burnett to
secure the account. Kevin Potts, the marketing and sales director of
Clear Money, said he looked at all of the UK’s top eight agencies.
The media account will be handled by MindShare, and Ogilvy Interactive,
Ogilvy Public Relations and OgilvyOne and Promotional Campaigns will all
also work on the business.
Clear Money will enable consumers to receive, file and pay their
At first the service will only be on the internet, but the company plans
to launch mobile phone and interactive TV versions by the end of the
Backers of the venture include The Carphone Warehouse, Bank Boston, AIG
and Communication Venture Partners.
Potts claimed 35 of the UK’s ’biggest billers’ had signed up to the
service but said most could not be named. However, he cited Envision,
which handles the collection of the TV licence fee, and the Sutton and
East Surrey Water Authority. He added that ’a couple’ of mobile phone
operators were signed up.
The O&M head of account management, Sally Netherwood, who led the pitch,
added: ’Ogilvy will lead Clear Money through the creation of the brand
and development of the marketing strategy through to a multimedia
consumer and business-to-business communications launch.’
The campaign will begin in the autumn when the service launches. Potts
said there would be extensive PR activity between now and then.
The service is being offered free to banks. Potts said: ’Banks continue
to remain very much part of the food chain for payments. Clear Money
adds value by making electronic presentment available to every biller
throughout Europe while making life easier for millions of ordinary
Similar billing services already operate in the US, Canada and New
Zealand, but Clear Money will be the first UK service.