Pru picks Wilson to steer shake-up

Wilson chosen to oversee radical repositioning of Prudential brand as Sommers prepares to leave

Prudential has appointed product chief Frank Wilson as marketing director of its retail division, to implement a repositioning of the insurance brand next year.

Mike Sommers, the consultant brought in to restructure the marketing department and review the brand at Prudential Retail in March, will leave the company at the end of the year.

Sommers has appointed Wilson, head of products and channels, to the interim position of deputy marketing director.

Wilson will be responsible for the restructured marketing operation, which Sommers came in to mastermind after the unexpected departure of Clare Salmon (MW March 11).

Sommers has also completed a brand review of the Prudential and worked with Wilson on a product and marketing strategy.

Wilson says: “My first job will be to reposition the Prudential brand. We will look at taking the man from the Pru forward or maybe dropping him altogether.”

Before joining Prudential a year ago, Wilson was director of savings and investments at Lloyds TSB.

During the restructure, Sommers dropped three of the marketing department’s four divisions and replaced them with more brand-focused units.

Sommers has also axed about 50 of the company’s 125 marketing jobs in the process.

The new-look department has seen communications, customer data and customer management merged into various other Prudential departments.

On top of this, new divisions have been created for brands, sales development and customer database management.

Only Wilson’s product and channels division has remained intact (MW April 29). Wilson is now seeking a replacement for his former role as head of that marketing unit.

Sommers is looking for new consultancy opportunities.

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