Direct Line hunts group chief to steer marketing

Direct Line, the insurance giant, is understood to be hunting its first group marketing director. It is also about to announce a replacement for Ian Craig, the head of marketing for home and motor insurance arm, Direct Line Insurance.

The UK’s biggest motor and household contents insurer, is planning a top-level shake-up of the marketing department to bring in the first ever group marketing director to oversee all of Direct Line’s divisions, including Direct Line Insurance and Direct Line Life.

It is understood that the group marketing director will work closely with Direct Line chief executive, Peter Davis.

Karen Jones, director of asset management for Hong Kong & Shanghai Bank, is believed to have accepted Craig’s position.

Craig was marketing manager for Direct Line Insurance and was in charge of its 6m advertising spend. Craig left Direct Line last November to join catalogue company Freemans as general manager responsible for new product development (MW November 9, 1995).

Direct Line has also confirmed the appointment of David Bloomfield, the Prudential’s former marketing campaigns manager. He joins as marketing manager for Direct Line Life. Bloomfield replaces Alison Meredith who joined PPP Healthcare last November.

Direct Line has been with TBWA for five years. The advertising account was previously with Hoare Wilkins when it merged into TBWA two years ago. The company, whose award winning commercials feature a red phone and jingle, has been trying to get the jingle registered under the Trades Marks Act 1995.

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