Internet bank Egg has been left without a senior marketing team, putting its &£40m brand and marketing spend in jeopardy. Mother handles the &£13m advertising account.
Brand director Richard Taylor and sales director Richard Cole have resigned from the bank after they were twice passed over for the top marketing post.
Both men were overlooked a first time when marketing director Jerry Toher left to head Royal Bank of Scotland-owned financial services brand Mint (MW September 9, 2004). He was not replaced, although his responsibilities were given to chief brand and communications officer Emma Byrne. Toher’s departure came just six months after Morgan Stanley poached the previous marketing director, Patrick Muir (MW March 4, 2004).
The Prudential-owned bank has now turned to headhunters for external candidates after Byrne asked her role to be downsized.
It is thought both men will join Toher at Mint, although a spokeswoman for the bank refuses to confirm or deny whether the appointments have been made. Byrne is believed to have requested to shrink her role to cover only corporate communications because of workload and family commitments, leaving a vacancy for a chief branding officer. At the time of going to press, nobody from Egg was available for comment.
The news of the exodus, coupled with a fresh face in charge of marketing, is expected to put incumbent agencies, which include Mother, Claydon Heeley Jones Mason and MediaCom on alert. Taylor was responsible for appointing sister agencies Claydon Heeley Jones Mason and Agency Republic to its &£30m direct-response account.
A third Egg marketer, brand communications manager Richard Murphy, is moving to GE Capital, as director of advertising and customer communications. Prudential, which owns 79 per cent of Egg, is said to be looking for a buyer for the internet business, which sold its loss-making French division for &£96m late last year. The sell-off followed an earlier attempt to sell the whole of Egg.