In 1985 John Donovan had the idea of a playing card themed game. This became “Bruce’s Lucky Deal”, a game offering over £4.5 worth of prizes, which was linked to Bruce Forsyth, the popular host of the UK TV game show, “Play Your Cards Right”. The novelty of the promotion launched in the summer of 1985 once again generated media interest and an article in the Financial Times mentioned that the order for 4.5 million packs of Shell-branded Carta Mundi quality playing cards was the world’s largest-ever purchase of its kind. 85 million “Every Card Can Win” scratch cards were printed. The promotion ran on Shell forecourts in the UK and Ireland.
IRISH SHELL MAKE MONEY GAME AUTUMN 1985 WITH SCALED DOWN PRIZE FUND
“Brucie” loved the idea. He received £50,000 for use of his name and likeness and an additional substantial sum for appearing in a series of amusing and popular TV commercials promoting the game. As per the screenshots shown below from YouTube.com video feature entitled “Shell Promotional Games: Introduced by John Donovan“. The video compilation contains TV features about several Don Marketing promotional games for Shell, including Bruce’s Lucky Deal.
Copyright for each featured video extract, or TV commercial, resides with the original copyright owners.
Autumn 1985 Nine Page Shell Bruce’s Lucky Deal Petrol Retailer Presentation (PDF). Game ran on Shell UK and Irish Shell forecourts (August/Sept 1985).
John Donovan, inventor of the Shell Bruce’s Lucky Deal “Every Card Can Win” Game. The photo was taken in October 2020, 35 years after the promotion was run for Shell in the UK and in Ireland.
One of the several million sealed packs of Carta Mundi Shell-branded quality playing cards given away as prizes in the promotion.
A presentation box containing packs of playing cards given to John Donovan in recognition of his role in creating the Bruce’s Lucky Deal game for Shell.
IRISH SHELL VERSION
John Chambers, Managing Director of Don Marketing during the period of several major national and international promotions for Royal Dutch Shell, including “Bruce’s Lucky Deal”, a playing card themed “Every Card Can Win” scratch card game in 1985 featuring legendary UK TV star, Bruce Forsyth.
Shell Promotional Games: Introduced by John Donovan
ONE OF TWO DON MARKETING VIDEO STUDIOS PROCESSING MAJOR PRIZE CLAIMS FOR SHELL BRUCE’S LUCKY DEAL.
MAJOR PRIZE WINNERS CHEQUES BEING PRINTED OUT FOR BRUCE’S LUCKY DEAL
Shell UK “Bruce’s Lucky Deal”, “Every Card Can Win” Scratch Card Game launched May 1985 (Devised by Don Marketing)
Shell UK “Bruce’s Lucky Deal” Daily Mail advert 24 May 1985
Old favourites that never die: Campaign Magazine 14 June 1985
Irish Shell “Bruce’s Lucky Deal launched August 1985
Marketing Magazine article “Games people play” involving John Donovan: 18 Sept 1986 (Photo of John Donovan holding aloft Shell Singapore “Make Money” game pieces – a national promotion devised and supplied by Don Marketing).
Marketing Week Magazine: RESEARCH: ENSURING THE RIGHT RESPONSE: 23 SEPTEMBER 1988shellplc.website and its sister non-profit websites royaldutchshellplc.com, royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia feature.