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Carlson unveils global realignment and Etihad CRM win

LONDON – Carlson Marketing has undertaken a global realignment to better serve the needs of its global clients, and has won a project from United Arab Emirates national carrier, Etihad Airways.

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The realignment was triggered by the arrival in June of new president and CEO Jim Schroer, who was a Carlson client in his two most recent jobs. He was executive vice-president for global sales, marketing and service at Daimler Chrysler and before that vice-president of global marketing for Ford.

The realignment sees Carlson streamlined into three new global lines of business and is a response to client suggestions.

One is Carlson 1to1, which offers customer strategy, decision-making tools, and capability in direct, digital and experiential marketing. The second is sales and marketing services, comprising loyalty marketing and staff training, recognition and rewards. The third is meetings and events, providing travel services and meetings and events management.

"We surveyed our top global clients and we're realigning around the priorities they've outlined for us," Schroer said.

In the process, the company's Europe, Middle East and Africa will now call itself Carlson Marketing rather than Carlson Marketing Group.

Jose Ferrao, EMEA president, has appointed two senior-level sector experts. Financial services will be led by EMEA vice-president Jonathan Grisdale, who was a founder and key driver of affinity marketing company Cendant's Cims, which pioneered the introduction of fee-based current accounts offering additional benefits.

Automotive will be lead by EMEA director Kevin Brundrett, who has worked in marketing for Ford and in agencies serving car clients, as well as accruing commercial experience as European president of Maritz Performance Improvement.

Carlson has won a number of new-business accounts recently, including Middle Eastern airline Etihad, for which it is developing a new breed of frequent flyer programme, as well as gaining additional business from Arla Foods and MBNA.

Etihad, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, is planning to expand its current total of 17 destinations to 70 by 2010 and intends to launch a new concept in frequent flyer programmes in 2006.

The programme will be developed by a consortium of companies headed by Carlson and includes customer management consultancy Peppers & Rogers Group, owned by Carlson, and CRM software supplier Epiphany.

Other Carlson EMEA clients include Guinness, Goldfish, KLM, Lloyds TSB and Royal Bank of Scotland.

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