Lewis ends Tiscali work over conflict of interest with BT

Lewis is understood to have resigned its corporate PR account with internet service provider Tiscali due to a conflict of interest with fellow client and rival service BT Openworld.

Lewis declined to comment on its decision to step down, but it is believed the agency resigned the Tiscali brief last week after tensions arose with year-long client Openworld, which has retained Lewis's consumer tech division Octane since last February (PRWeek, 15 February 2002).

Openworld - BT's internet arm - said it became uncomfortable with Lewis's client relationship with Tiscali, despite the agency's attempts to distance the two accounts by handling them in separate divisions.

BT spokesperson Michael Wadley said: 'We've not been entirely comfortable with the situation, but look forward to reaching a mutually acceptable agreement.'

Tiscali refused to confirm Lewis's resignation of the corporate PR brief, except to say this week that Lewis was 'currently' working with the company.

Lewis replaced two agencies on the Openworld account last year, beating incumbents LeFevre Communications and Band & Brown Communications to the brief.

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