SeaFrance reviews comms for 'superferry' service

Cross-Channel ferry operator SeaFrance is poised to review its PR account with a view to luring passengers onto its new 'Berlioz' superferry.

SeaFrance faces intense competition from low-cost airlines and Eurostar.

The move threatens to end six-year incumbent BGB Communications hold of the account.

SeaFrance head of marketing Sarah Staughton said plans were 'at initial stages' to review the account, which carries annual fees of more than £80,000.

BGB, which handles regional and national UK media relations and develops reader promotions with national newspapers, said it would pitch to defend its brief.

BGB also manages the presence of SeaFrance at consumer events such as the Vive La France exhibition at London's Olympia and has handled crisis PR and some lobbying work.

SeaFrance's review follows the June launch of the Berlioz, which carries 1,900 passengers and 700 cars. Berlioz's £25 fares aim to tackle competition and address the decline in numbers of 'booze-cruise' day-trippers. This is a result of a rise in French tobacco taxes, a stronger Euro and aggressive UK high street alcohol pricing.

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