Changes at the top, gaps in the portfolio to fill
The company’s annual report pointed to a challenging year, but BT Group’s share price has risen by 25% in the past six months and the new year brings a new CEO in the shape of Philip Jansen (currently CEO of Worldpay). Jansen replaces Gavin Patterson whose experience lent a marketing perspective to the top role, so his departure could mean a shift in strategy when it comes to marketing and sponsorship.
Having acquired EE in 2015 and invested heavily in areas such as sports rights and pay-tv, the group will be looking to exploit synergies in consumer marketing across its best networks, products and services. Here there’s been some senior marketing moves, with MD of marketing, Max Taylor leaving the company and Pete Oliver becoming the single marketing lead for both BT Consumer and EE.
Last orders for F1?: BT started providing tech for Williams' Formula 1 (a deal championed by Patterson at the time) around the same time Martini became lead sponsor. The deal with Martini comes to an end after 2018, with PKN Orlen taking over in 2019. Channel 4 and Sky negotiated to keep Formula One coverage available on free-to-air television in 2019 – where does this leave BT?
The Big Screen? EE (historically Orange) has partnered with the BAFTAs for 20 years, most recently bringing the EE Roboselfie, a high-tech, selfie-taking robot, and 360 degrees VR filming of the event. The partnership has been extended into 2019, but nothing is confirmed beyond this. Aside from the one off La-La Land screening in 2017 Orange Wednesdays wound down after a short flirtation with streaming via EE before ending in 2016 – will we see an extension of the BAFTA partnership or a larger foray into film in 2019?
Content deals: From Apple Music to live sport streaming EE has been using the promise of free content and media on the move to appeal to a ‘younger more digitally savvy’ consumer and will want to continue promoting its offers here. Beyond cross-selling BT Sport, could there be new media partnerships brokered in the new year?
Media Spend Q1-3 2018: £73,875,815
Partnerships: Williams Racing, BT and Scottish Rugby until 2021 - naming rights to Scotland's largest sporting stadium, BT Murrayfield, alongside its role as principal partner of the Scotland national team and Scotland 7s. EE BAFTAS.
Managing Director for Consumer Marketing Pete Oliver – connect
Consumer Marketing Director BT/BT Sport Dan Ramsay – connect
Head of Sports Sponsorship EE Matt Stevenson – connect