American Express eyes UK consumer shops for roster expansion

American Express is on the lookout for an agency to boost the consumer-facing aspects of its UK roster.

LONDON: American Express is on the lookout for an agency to strengthen the consumer element of its UK roster.

The company is in talks with a number of PR shops ahead of launching a more formal pitch process as it looks at bringing in "new thinking."

Doug Smith, VP for international public affairs at American Express UK, said the hunt for a new PR firm is taking place as the personal finance giant considers its communications plan for the coming year.

"It is a process we have gone through before," he said. "We’ve always sought to work with a select small group of agencies and treat them as partners. When we have a lot of different projects coming up, we look at the agencies we have and consider if we need to bring in new thinking."

The winning agency would join a roster that includes MHP, Ogilvy Public Relations, and Consolidated on retainer, as well as Cake and Talk PR on a project basis. 

The areas of focus for American Express consumer communications include its Invites initiative, which gives users access to events including the London Film Festival and London Fashion Week.

Another key area for the company will be "growing the digital offering, both from a business and PR perspective," added Smith.

In January, American Express reported that its fourth-quarter profit doubled as consumer spending climbed, with a net income of $1.3 billion.

This story originally appeared on the website of PRWeek UK.

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