B2, the company launched in May by the Barclays Group to bring
share ownership to the mass market, has shortlisted three agencies to
handle consumer PR on a retained basis.
The financial services company hired QBO to handle its launch, which was
accompanied by a reported pounds 15 million advertising campaign
featuring actor Richard E Grant.
QBO is not pitching for the new account. The new agency will be briefed
to promote the company’s reputation and build its brand, and will focus
on obtaining coverage in consumer and lifestyle media. The agency will
also help to launch new products.
B2 has no branches but serves customers over the phone and by post. Its
first product is the Advanced Savings Account, which offers consumers
the chance to invest in a variety of FTSE 100 company shares. The
investment is ensured by Barclays in case of a stock market crash.
B2’s products are aimed at around 5.5 million people, identified in
research for Barclays, who are active savers but reluctant to take risks
with their investments. Its services are particularly aimed at younger
savers, and 50 per cent of customers so far are under-35.