Navman signs Brands2Life

Satellite navigation firm changes support to help it stand out in challenging market.

Leading satellite navigation system Navman is set to hand a major retainer to Brands2Life.

The company has lined up Brands2Life to replace Harvard on the account, understood to be worth around £75,000 per year in fees.

It follows a three-way shoot-out between Brands2Life, Harvard and Text100.

Navman is the third most popular satellite navigation system in the UK after TomTom, whose PR is handled by Hill & Knowlton, and Garmin, whose PR is managed in-house.

Another major part of Brands2Life's brief is to help Navman with brand transitioning.

The company wants to make Mio Technology, which merged with Navman at the start of last year, the dominant brand name in the UK rather than Navman.

Harvard has held the account for two years. The PR review comes as Navman works to stand out in a highly competitive sector.

This year is set to be challenging for the sat nav market and last month industry leader TomTom announced a fourth-quarter loss of almost £900m. The market has been affected by the ailing automotive industry and faces competition from mobile phones that can be equipped with navigation software.

Navman European marketing director Colin Holloway said sat nav companies were moving away from positioning themselves as helping people get from A to B.

Instead, Navman is trying to improve the travelling experience. 'Once you get to your destination you can have access to the internet to find hotels or restaurants and a GPS reference to take you straight there,' said Holloway.

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