FCBi faces statutory review of 3m Open University business

Open University (OU) is seeking an advertising agency as part of a statutory review of its £3m account. The account is held by FCBi and it is not clear if the agency will repitch.

The review comes just four months after the distance-learning provider appointed former npower chief marketer David Andrew as marketing director (MW June 8).

The brief is to develop the organisation’s creative work, brand image and sub-branding. OU is also seeking a digital agency to use new media channels to attract students.

FCBi created an integrated campaign to launch OU’s new brand identity in 2005. The multichannel drive, called “Powering people”, highlighted the organisation’s offer of accessible education for all. The TV campaign featured students illuminated by the “glow of knowledge” from their studies.

The campaign was designed to raise awareness of OU’s proposition, and to boost enquiries from potential higher and further education students looking for flexible education opportunities.

Andrew believes the university has been too consumer-focused in the past and he is using the review to assess how the university communicates with businesses. He was appointed to replace Jan Smith, who had been handling the role on an interim basis following the departure of Andrew Hobbs.

OU also works with Response One, for direct marketing, and Zed Media, for media buying. The review is not expected to affect either agency.


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