US-based People’s Bank is hunting for its first retained UK public
relations agency as it prepares to launch into the intensely competitive
credit card market.
People’s Bank, the 28th largest credit card issuer in the States, plans
to launch a card in the UK later this year which will offer lower-than-
average interest rates and above-average credit limits.
In the US, a People’s Bank card carries an interest rate of 13.9 per
cent and the company has made no secret of its wish to enter the UK
market, undercutting rivals such as RBS Advanta - backed by the Royal
Bank of Scotland - which launched last week.
A five-member team will arrive in the UK early next month to select a PR
adviser. It will be led by senior vice president Ron Urquhart, who heads
up the bank’s operations staff in Northampton.
Three or four agencies have already been asked to pitch for a media
relations brief targeting potential customers. The chosen agency would
also be expected to position the bank as an authoritative source of
comment on credit card related issues.
‘Interest rates are becoming a major issue in the UK,’ explained
Urquhart. ‘As people become more and more educated about that it is
going to attract publicity and we want to be an independent spokesman,
like we are in the States. When people want to know something they can
An appointment is expected by the middle of March.