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GoCompare is a British financial services comparison website, established in Wales in 2006 It provides comparison details for financial products including car insurance, home and pet insurance and breakdown cover Since 2009 its adverts have featured a fictional Italian tenor named Gio Compario played by Welsh tenor Wynne Evans, which have been voted "most irritating advertisement"[2] It is listed on the London Stock Exchange


  • 1 History
  • 2 Services
  • 3 Advertising
  • 4 Awards
  • 5 Controversy
  • 6 See also
  • 7 References
  • 8 External links


GoCompare was established in November 2006 and is based in Newport, Wales The company's founder was Hayley Parsons, who worked for Admiral Insurance for 14 years,[3] and was formerly head of business development at Confusedcom[4] Parsons was replaced as CEO by Jon Morrell following a takeover by insurance company esure in March 2015 [3]

It was the first comparison site to focus on features of insurance products rather than just listing prices,[5] which led to the company being invited to become a member of the British Insurance Brokers Association BIBA[6]

The company, which is 49% owned by esure, posted a pre-tax profit of £347 million for 2011, up 15% on the previous year[3]

On 8 December 2014, esure, the insurance company, acquired Gocomparecom in a deal worth £95 million[7]

In November 2016 the company was the subject of a demerger from esure[8]

In November 2017, ZPG's offer to buy the company for £460 million was rejected[9]

In December 2017 GoCompare announced the acquisition of MyVoucherCodes, one of the UK's largest online voucher code sites, in a £365m deal[10]


GoCompare provides a comparison service for vehicle, home and pet insurance, and breakdown cover It also provides comparison services for travel insurance, gas and electricity, broadband, loans, credit cards, mortgages and other financial products through preferred providers such as Energylinx and Experian On 14 August 2012, the company launched "Covered mag", an online magazine that claims to be "unlike any other financial publication you've ever read"[11]


In June 2009 the company launched an advertising campaign featuring a fictional Italian tenor called Gio Compario pronounced: Jeo Campario played by Wynne Evans[12] The advertisements feature 'Gio' singing the 'Go Compare' tune inspired by Over There in various locations, and was voted as the most irritating advertisement of both 2009 and 2010[13][14]

In direct response to this reaction, Go Compare deliberately subverted the campaign in July 2012 by running a series of adverts where celebrity guests such as Sue Barker, Jimmy Carr, Stuart Pearce, Ray Mears, Louie Spence and Stephen Hawking lined up to "silence" the character of Gio Compario Marketing officer Kevin Hughes said "It was risky, but a brand has to listen to its customers"[15]

The character returned in July 2015 after an 18-month break, singing as part of what Evans called a "much calmer performance"[16]


The company won the 'One to Watch' category at the Fast Growth Business Awards 2008, with the judges complementing the management team for 'an extremely well-executed business with a clear USP and strong brand'[17] In September 2009 it achieved the Investors in People award[18]

The company's founder, Hayley Parsons, was winner of the 'Woman in Business' award at the South Wales Chamber of Commerce Business Awards 2009[19] She also won the Western Mail's 'Welsh Woman in Innovation Award' in 2008, and the 'Business Leader' category in the Inspire Wales Awards 2010[20] The awards, which are organised by the Institute of Welsh Affairs, recognise the role that Welsh residents play in encouraging active citizenship and in promoting their communities on a local, regional, national and global scale In January 2012, Parsons was awarded an OBE for services to the economy[3]


In September 2007 the company admitted that, on one occasion, an unlawful breach of privacy had taken place with regard to the passing on of data provided by customers It said that this was the result of a breach of contract by a sub-contractor, Performance Direct, and stated that it would take immediate action to prevent it happening again[21]

In January 2008 the site was blacklisted for a time by Google due to "irregular inbound links" This resulted in its share of search traffic for the term "car insurance" reducing from 1749% to 231%[22] Gocomparecom was blacklisted again in April 2009[23]

See also

  • Confusedcom
  • Comparethemarketcom
  • Moneysupermarketcom
  • uSwitch


  1. ^ a b c "Annual Report 2016" PDF Go Compare Retrieved 25 January 2018 
  2. ^ Burn, Rebecca "The most annoying adverts from the past 15 years" Telegraph Retrieved 2016-11-04 
  3. ^ a b c d Dunkley, Jamie 1 July 2012 "Go Compare founder Hayley Parsons nets £32m dividend" The Daily Telegraph Retrieved 2013-01-11 
  4. ^ "Start-up compares well for ex-Admiral worker" Western Mail 21 February 2007 Retrieved 2 February 2010 
  5. ^ Sion Barry 11 September 2009 "Best business brains receive their awards at celebration of local talent" walesonline 
  6. ^ "Page not found" 
  7. ^ "Newport-based Gocomparecom in £95m takeover deal" BBC News Retrieved 2015-06-14 
  8. ^ "Gocomparecom Shares Begin Trading After esure Demerger" TD Direct Investing 3 November 2016 Retrieved 4 November 2016 
  9. ^ Aime Williams, Oliver Ralph 14 November 2017 "ZPG confirms failed £460m bid for GoComparecom" Financial Times 
  10. ^ "GoCompare to buy MyVoucherCodes in £365m deal" Telegraph 19 December 2017 Retrieved 19 December 2017 
  11. ^ "Covered mag, presented by Gocomparecom" gocomparecom 
  12. ^ "GoCompare creates opera singer to take on Comparethemarket's meerkat" marketingmagazinecouk 
  13. ^ "The most irritating ads of 2009" marketingmagazinecouk 
  14. ^ "'GoCompare' car insurance telly ad named most annoying of 2010" tellymixcouk 
  15. ^ "Marketing and advertising: Small screen, big rewards" wwwpostonlinecouk 
  16. ^ Karen Price 26 July 2015 "Go Compare: The most annoying man on telly is back" walesonline 
  17. ^ "One to Watch 2008" Fast Growth Business Awards by Startupscouk: Start up a successful business 
  18. ^ "Gocompare Hayley's in a league of her own" Western Mail 29 January 2010 Retrieved 2 February 2010 
  19. ^ "Best business brains receive their awards at celebration of local talent" Western Mail 12 September 2009 Retrieved 2 February 2010 
  20. ^ "Awards recognise active citizenship" walesonline 15 June 2010 
  21. ^ "Personal details at risk on comparison websites" The Times 22 September 2007 Retrieved 2 February 2010 
  22. ^ Halpern, Louis; Roy Murphy 2009 Personal Reputation Management - Making The Internet Work For You Halpern Cowan Publishing pp 162–163 ISBN 978-0-9562892-0-9 
  23. ^ "GoCompare Car Insurance - wwwgocomparecom - Go Compare Ban" Money News Shopping ASAP Ventures 23 April 2009 Retrieved 2 February 2010 

External links

  • Gocomparecom
  • Covered mag, car insurance, travel insurance, uk,, Information about

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