NatWest recruits marketing chief

NatWest has recruited a senior United Biscuits executive to head its marketing department, as part of a drive to become more customer-focused.

Frazer Smith has taken up the position of strategic marketing director and will report to Norman Blackwell, NatWest’s director of group development. Smith was formerly managing director of United Biscuits in Western Europe.

Blackwell says: “We must become a leading-edge marketing organisation and that’s why we wanted someone with a background in packaged goods, who can take the consumer viewpoint rather than the producers.”

Smith is responsible for developing and implementing a unified brand strategy across the Nat-West group, which comprises 13 businesses.

He will liaise with managing directors and marketing departments in NatWest’s consumer-focused operations, which include its retail, card, commercial, mortgage and insurance businesses.

Smith’s appointment is part of a drive to centralise decision-making on NatWest brand strategy. Last year, the group dropped its roster of eight advertising, direct marketing and design agencies and appointed TBWA GGT Simons Palmer as lead consultancy.

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