OU hires ex-npower chief for top marketing position

Open University (OU) has appointed former npower chief marketer David Andrew as marketing director, ending a year-long hunt to fill the role.

Open University (OU) has appointed former npower chief marketer David Andrew as marketing director, ending a year-long hunt to fill the role.

Andrew replaces Jan Smith who had stepped in as interim marketing, sales and customer development director last year (MW January 27, 2005), initially on a six-month tenure. At the time, Smith took over from Dr Andrew Hobbs, a former Royal Mail marketer.

Andrew says he is undertaking a review of the distance-learning university’s marketing strategy, but also that agency arrangements will remain unchanged for now. OU’s lead creative agency is FCBi, which was appointed last year. Response One handles direct marketing and Zed Media is responsible for media buying.

He says the university is facing many challenges, not least the rise of the internet. “When OU was founded in the 1960s, it was in a unique position, being the only distance-learning university. Now OU is facing a unique challenge in that any university in the world can offer distance-learning facilities via the Net.The threat from competitors is also an opportunity for us to develop our operations.”

As part of the review, he will assess how OU communicates with businesses as well as consumers, saying that, in the past, it has concentrated too much on the consumer. “We will now approach above-the-line advertising from the bottom up,” he says.

Andrew left npower when it was taken over by German company RWE in 2003 (MW August 14, 2003).

Latest from Marketing Week


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


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.


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.


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 3703 or email customerservices@marketingweek.com

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