McCann wins Barclays Premier business

Barclays has appointed McCann Erickson to a multimillion pound pan-European account to launch its premium Barclays Premier banking brand across the region.

The agency is understood to be working with Interpublic sister agency Futurebrand on devising the concept and campaign and launching it across Europe. Barclays will open Premier branches, which target the super wealthy, and services in countries including France and Spain.

Premier operates under the leadership of Frits Seegers, the former Citibank executive who, since 2006, has headed Barclays’ global commercial and retail banking division. It is thought he is keen to position Barclays Premier as a potential rival to Barclays Wealth, which is controlled by internal rival Barclays Capital chief Bob Diamond.

Premier Banking was launched in the UK in 1994, aimed at a “mass affluent” audience. To qualify, customers must earn at least £60,000 annually, or have £70,000 or more assets to invest. If a Premier’s customer’s investable assets reach £1m the customer can transfer to Barclays Private Banking.

McCann Erickson is also thought to have been approached about other projects within the division.

The rivalry between Seegers and Diamond is expected to intensify following the departure earlier this month of Paul Idzik, the group chief operating officer.

Idzik, a former management consultant, was responsible for reorganising Barclays into two businesses – the global commercial banking headed by Seegers, and Diamond’s, which covers Barclays Wealth, Barclays Capital and Barclays Global Investors.

McCann Erickson London has won the £4m global advertising business for Saudi-based petrochemicals giant Sabic after pitching against the London offices of JWT and Grey and Biskit. Universal McCann will handle planning and buying.

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