Stephen Hawking joins battle of price comparison websites

PRICE comparison website Go Compare yesterday unveiled Professor Stephen Hawking, one of the world’s most renowned physicists, as the star of its new TV advert. The coup is the latest move in an increasingly bizarre marketing war that has come to characterise the booming industry.

Hawking, the former Lucasian professor of mathematics at Cambridge University, spends the first part of the clip explaining he has discovered how to generate black holes – before deploying one to destroy Gio Compario the irritating fictitious opera star who represents the brand.

“I confess I am a fan of the Go Compare adverts, but I am also an opera fan, so I was delighted to be given the opportunity to help save the nation and silence Gio,” he said.

Price comparison websites offer broadly similar services so rely heavily on memorable advertising to attract customers – such as Compare the Market’s meerkats.

Go Compare was only founded in 2006 but is valued at £500m. Founder Hayley Parsons is reported to be considering a sale of her stake, with 49-per-cent owner Esure a potential purchaser.