Airport rail links in media alliance

Gatwick and Heathrow Express airport train services are to merge sales and marketing teams at the start of next month as part of an alliance agreement to provide common standards across both services.

The move will result in a consolidation of the media accounts for both operations.

Rocket, part of New PHD, handles Gatwick Express’ media business, and Carat and Booth Lockett Makin handles Heathrow Express’.

West Anglia Great Northern, the owners of Stansted Express, is also in talks with the management of Heathrow Express, owned by BAA, and National Express’ Gatwick Express, about joining the alliance.

To be called Airport Express, the alliance aims to bring Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted rail airport links under the one banner.

Airport Express’ marketing will be headed by Jeremy Job, the marketing director of Heathrow Express.

The merger will result in both design and creative advertising agencies pitching to develop Airport Express as an internationally recognised brand. TBWA GGT Simons Palmer is Heathrow Express’ Agency

Job says that any decisions on advertising would not be made immediately. He adds that the Airport Express brand was something he was looking at franchising to other airport rail link services outside the UK.

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