British Gas dips into new waters

British Gas Trading is breaking into the credit card market with the launch of the Goldfish brand. The name and identity have been created by Wolff Olins.

The gas company has teamed up with HFC Bank with the aim of creating one of the top three credit cards and a customer base of more than one million card holders.

Competition from other gas suppliers has forced British Gas to diversify. Goldfish will offer reductions on a range of typical household goods and bills, rather than being a loyalty card attached to one store or service.

“The goldfish stands for a notion of a new way of doing things. It has the right associations – it’s domestic, friendly and warm,” says Wolff Olins consultant Jonathan Knowles.

Knowles draws parallels with telecommunications company Orange, which was also branded by Wolff Olins: “Like Orange, it’s a stunning consumer proposal.

“We are trying to express the world as a customer proposition,” he adds. The brand has been

created to stretch to other products, such as education.

The consultancy has designed six versions of the fish, to be used on direct marketing literature,

stationery and four card designs.

m Coley Porter Bell is believed to be working on a new name and

corporate identity for British Gas as part of its proposed demerger. Transco International and British Gas Energy, the two divisions within British Gas, are both “transitional names”, says a British Gas spokeswoman.

New names will need ratifying by shareholders. CPB designed British Gas’s current identity in 1994. British Gas will not confirm CPB’s new role and no one from the group will comment.

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