The move comes weeks after the bank brought in ex-Department for Trade and Industry (DTI) official Rosa Wilkinson to oversee public affairs.
It is understood that Lloyds TSB has contacted at least three agencies – LLM Communications, Four Communications and CDR Public Policy – as well as inviting Edelman to repitch.
Recently-established CDR Public Policy is thought to be in a strong position to unseat Edelman because its MD Simon Nayyar previously led on the account. Nayyar quit his post as vice-chairman of public affairs at Edelman in May to help set up CDR Public Policy, the latest addition to the Citigate Dewe Rogerson group.
Lloyds TSB plans to hold pitches over the next two weeks with a view to appointing an agency by the end of October.
The successful agency will have to lobby ministers and officials for more freedom for banks – the industry claims to be sinking in a sea of red tape and regulatory restriction. It will also be charged with dealing with the Office of Fair Trading as it continues to probe the issue of bank changes.
The pitch process is being overseen by Wilkinson, who said the bank was reviewing its public affairs requirements because ‘the financial services environment is more complex and challenging now than it ever has been’.
She added that she wasn’t looking for an agency to deal with issues on a day-to-day basis, saying rather that ‘the big challenge is to look at what’s on the horizon’.
Wilkinson joined Lloyds TSB in the summer, having previously been MD at the DTI’s Small Business Service. Her appointment follows an internal restructure.
Wilkinson reports to the bank’s deputy chief executive Mike Fairey.