Marketing will be core to Northern Rock rescue plan

Northern Rock management have pledged their commitment to the beleagured banking brand and have revealed that marketing will be “core” to its rescue plan.

The temporarily nationalised bank published annual results and a summary of its action plan on Monday (March 31), stating its intention to clear its £24bn Bank of England debt by 2010.

Executive chairman Ron Sandler, who was drafted in by the Government to run the bank, has also published a message of reassurance to customers on the Newcastle-based bank’s website.

He says that although it will now “not always” be able to offer mortgage customers competitive deals, in most other aspects it will be “business as usual”.

He adds that it will retain its brand name because it still carries “a great deal of goodwill” amongst its customers.

In a summary of the restructuring plan, the bank’s board pledges to “re-establish the Northern Rock brand and revitalise marketing”. It says that although retail customer confidence has been eroded, research indicates “continuing loyalty” to the brand. The bank is developing marketing activity to support the turnaround plan.

The annual results show the bank posted a pre-tax loss of £167.6m in 2007 and is paying former chief executive Adam Applegarth £785,000 as part of his severance agreement. It is also trimming staff numbers by a third over the next three years.

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