BT to Put £150m Wireless Account Up for Grabs

10 August 2001

In line with the old adage about ‘new brooms’ Will Harris, recently appointed vice-president of marketing at BT Wireless, is expected to call an agency beauty parade for the fledgling company’s £150 million pan-European advertising account.

The soon to be de-merged and renamed wireless telephony unit of British Telecom comprises five former divisions including mobile phone network BT Cellnet and mobile internet operator Genie (of which Harris was formerly global marketing director) plus units in Germany, Holland and Ireland.

Prior to joining BT, Harris served as board account director at Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO, current incumbent on the Genie and BT Cellnet accounts. Media buying for both is split between Zenith Media and the Allmond Partnership.

However, insiders say Harris has an open mind on the matter of agencies. Nor will he be the sole arbiter of any review: he would share decision-making with former Genie colleague Kent Thexton, now in the dual role of chief marketing data officer at BTW and president of Genie.

The new entity will have an uphill struggle in the European marketplace, competing head-on with the likes of Deutsche Telecom's T-mobile, Vodafone and Orange.

News source: CampaignLive (UK)