- The Treasury this week launched a £4.5 million television advertising campaign designed to prepare the UK's small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) for the introduction of the single currency on 1 January next year.
The commercials, devised by TBWA GGT Simons Palmer, introduce the character Martin Skinner, owner and manager of an SME. The seven ads will be broadcast nationally throughout September and will show Martin reminding his staff of the need to be ready for the Euro, and telling business contacts how the single currency will affect their companies.
The television campaign began on 1 September and will be supported by radio and print ads later this month. Launching the campaign, Lord Simon, minister for trade and competitiveness in Europe, said: "Our research shows that too many small and medium-sized businesses do not know enough about the Euro or, in some cases, have wrongly assumed that because the UK is not joining the single currency on 1 January 1999, it will not affect them."
Only 11 per cent of SMEs know that the Euro will be launched on 1 January 1999, according to Treasury figures, and only 5 per cent have made preparations.
The Treasury is also sending a mail shot to the 1.6 million businesses most likely to be affected by the Euro.