Media Relations: What The Papers Say - Abbey rebrand met with yawns

Abbey's latest image overhaul reflecting its Spanish ownership was greeted with weary scepticism by City commentators.

Coming just 17 months after the previous rebrand - dubbed 'the sort of desperate nonsense that companies are prone to when they utterly lose the plot' (The Independent, 26 February) - pundits predicted the decision would be met with 'knowing looks' (thisislondon, 27 February).

Negative messages about the cost of repeated image changes were uppermost in coverage, which also highlighted likely job losses, Abbey's lost market share and the general downturn in mortgage lending.

Piercing the gloom was CEO Francisco Gomez-Roldan's mantra-like repetition of the Banco Santander Central Hispano strapline - 'strength, stability, leadership'. Though dismissed as 'the kind of guff every other bank aspires to' (The Times, 25 February), commentators recognised that stability is what Abbey needs most. Changing its logo every few years is one habit the new management musn't get.

Analysis conducted by Echo Research from data supplied to PRWeek from NewsNow. www.echoresearch.com www.newsnow.co.uk.

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