Old Mutual, the South African life assurance group, has appointed
College Hill on fees believed to total pounds 600,000 to handle PR for
its planned demutualisation and potential listing on the London Stock
Old Mutual initially appointed Citigate Communications in August to
handle the task but decided to put the business out to pitch again.
College Hill won the account after pitching against Bell Pottinger
Financial and Citigate for the business.
Old Mutual has around three million policy holders in South Africa and
may seek a main listing in London to gain easier access to funds from
international investors. Its chairman Mike Levett confirmed earlier this
week that it was talking to the South African Reserve Bank about the
planned listing. However, any decision to list the company in markets
outside South Africa may face political opposition.
College Hill’s 12-month role has two phases. First it will focus on
gaining the consent of policy holders for demutualisation. This will
involve targeting Old Mutual policy holders in South Africa, Zimbabwe,
Malawi, Namibia, Guernsey and Hong Kong.
If policy holders vote for demutualisation, the agency will then help
Old Mutual in its preparations for a stock market listing.
College Hill’s chairman Alex Sandberg has been attempting to build the
agency’s share of South African business for some time.