Sailing trip to decide fate of 12m CU task

Commercial Union has stunned advertising agency executives by declaring the winner of its 12m creative account will be the team which performs best on a day’s sailing.

Shortlisted agencies Leo Burnett and Duckworth Finn Grubb Waters have been told they must each spend a day on board a yacht with the CU team, after the company’s board was divided over who to appoint.

Top CU management, who are known to have a passion for yachting, will assign the account (worth at least 12m a year for the next three years) to the agency team they “gel with”, according to insiders.

Sources say the agencies will be taken out in the middle of next month, probably on the Solent.

CU sponsored a yacht called The Commercial Union Assurance in the BT Global Challenge, the round-the- world yacht race, which returned to Southampton in July. The company has had use of the yacht for corporate hospitality, but according to a spokesman it is not owned by CU.

The insurer is reviewing its brand positioning, which may involve ditching its long-standing endline “We won’t make a drama out of a crisis”. This is seen to be irrelevant to CU’s growing portfolio of life products, such as pensions and savings.

Latest from Marketing Week

NOT REGISTERED? IT'S FREE, QUICK AND EASY!

Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now

THE BEST CONTENT

Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.

THE BIGGEST ISSUES

From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.

PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3711 or email subscriptions@marketingweek.com

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here