Aviva reviews PA account in wake of RAC acquisition

Aviva, the FTSE 100 group that owns Britain’s biggest insurer Norwich Union, has kicked off a review of its UK public affairs account following its acquisition of the RAC earlier this year.



Up for grabs is a wide-ranging brief that involves lobbying on issues from pensions provision and flood protection to congestion charging.
According to a spokesman, fees for the account are expected to be around £15,000 to £20,000 a month.

'We can confirm that Aviva is retendering for its UK public affairs consultancy brief as part of our standard corporate governance procedures,' said corporate affairs director Stephen Pain. 'The acquisition of the RAC means our requirements have changed.'

Aviva has used Luther Pendragon to provide public affairs support to the NU business for nearly three years. AS Biss & Co is the
incumbent for motoring business RAC, which Aviva acquired in May.

The RAC recently hired APCO consultant Christopher Snelling as PA manager.

NU Insurance head of public affairs Ian Beggs is currently taking credentials from agencies. The company intends to shortlist four or five firms to pitch at the end of January before whittling the contest down to a two-way shootout.

On the life insurance, the brief will demand a thorough understanding of the ramifications of this week's Turner Report on pensions, which among other measures called for a  gradual rise in the retirement age to 68. The review also coincides with the passing of the Compensation Bill, as well as various road-pricing initiatives.

Aviva wants to maximise the influence of its CEO Richard Harvey, who has just completed a two-year spell as chair of the Association of British Insurers.

Aviva's Morley fund management arm is the only aspect of its UK business excluded from the review. The group retains GPlus for PA counsel in Brussels.

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