Royal Mint readies review of £1m comms contract

The Royal Mint has launched a wide-ranging review of its comms, putting Porter Novelli's £1m-plus brief with the state-owned body under threat.

Collectables: The Mint released coins for the Jubilee and Olympics
Collectables: The Mint released coins for the Jubilee and Olympics

The 1,100-year-old coin manufacturer has initiated a wholesale audit of its PR, marketing, social media and international comms before its three-year contract with Porter Novelli expires in November.

The Mint is currently meeting with a number of agencies but has yet to draw up an official briefing document. It is thought that the body hopes to finalise its comms review by the end of this year.

One well-placed source told PRWeek the Mint was looking to make comms a more integral part of its operations and ‘put its story at the heart of what it is doing’.

A spokesman for The Royal Mint said that it was ‘considering its options, meeting a selection of agencies to understand the marketplace’.

The successful agency will help lead The Royal Mint’s comms around the 60th anniversary of the Queen’s coronation in 2013. Next year also marks the 30th anniversary of the decimal £1 coin.

Porter Novelli won the retained account, thought to be worth in excess of £1m, in 2009, with a brief to broaden the Treasury-owned body’s consumer appeal in the run-up to the Olympics.

This year, The Royal Mint and Porter Novelli handled major comms campaigns around the launch of the Queen’s £5 Diamond Jubilee coin, London 2012 Olympics coin collectables and the body’s role in the making of the official Games medals.

Jo Patterson, head of consumer at Porter Novelli, said the agency had yet to decide whether to repitch, but confirmed the Mint was obliged to review its supplier contracts every three years.

The Mint has been identified as a possible state-owned asset that could be privatised, but it is not thought financial PR forms part of the review.

Royal Mint timeline

2012 The Royal Mint revenue grows by 46 per cent to a record £314m, compared with £215m in 2010-11.

2009 The Royal Mint Limited, a company owned by HM Treasury, is established. The Mint is given commercial freedom for the first time.

2008 The Royal Mint announces the development of the London 2012 Olympic Coin Programme.

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