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Posts Tagged ‘WCG’

W2O Launches New ‘Brewlife’ Agency

Brewlife Happy Monday morning! Today in Breaking Industry News: The W2O Group, an “independent global network of communications firms” whose ranks include Portugese firm W2O Digital, New York/London-based WCG and San Francisco’s Twist Marketing, just announced plans to form an entirely new agency, to be known as Brewlife.

While we were initially disappointed to learn that Brewlife will not specialize in developing and marketing experimental beers, we are now glad to report that the company’s services will be far more comprehensive.

Based in San Francisco and staffed by a team of industry veterans with decades of experience in branding and communications, Brewlife will offer integrated marketing services including strategic consulting, creative and digital design, advertising and public advocacy efforts to a wide range of clients with a particular focus on “entrepreneurial and startup firms” and “emerging and re-emerging companies”. The fact that the Brewlife team will begin its life with access to all of W20′s shared resources ensures that new clients will hit the ground running.

Paul Laland, a longtime member of the W2O Group, will act as managing director of the new agency. In his introductory blog post, Laland expands on the principles behind Brewlife and the agency’s goals, which include “bring[ing] brands to life by infusing them with a provocative voice” and combining the “passion of storytelling” with advanced data analytics.

We’ll be sure to report back on subsequent Brewlife developments.

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Roll Call: Proof and B-M, Carmichael Lynch Spong, RF Binder

Proof Integrated Communications has chosen Michael Bassik (left) as CEO. Bassik was previously B-M’s U.S. digital practice chair, a position he will continue to hold. Interim CEO Tony Telloni will become MD of brand integration and innovation in the consumer and brand marketing practice. He’ll also continue as the New York market leader. Proof is the marcomms and advertising agency formed from the Burson-Marsteller and PSBcreative advertising units.

Emily Buchanan has been named senior principal, chair of brand marketing and social engagement at Carmichael Lynch Spong. She was previously at MSLGroup where she was SVP, deputy practice director for the consumer marketing group. She’ll be based in Minneapolis.

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WCG Creates New Parent Company, Network of Firms

WCG, a firm focused on healthcare, corporate communications, crisis, and other areas, has created a new parent company and two new firms that will, together, provide integrated communications services to industries ranging from technology to automotive and consumer goods.

The new parent company is W2O and under its umbrella will be WCG; Twist, a comms firm with a foundation in insights and analytics; and W2O Ventures, an “incubational arm” focused on partnerships.

Over the years, the company has grown “exponentially” according to Jim Weiss, chairman and CEO of the WCG network, with the company experiencing a 41 percent compounded growth rate over the past 10 years and a 29 percent jump in revenue in 2011. Revenue for last year totaled $47.6 million.

Rather than add new practice areas to maximize on these results, the firm launched this new network, which will keep the operation from getting too big.

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Roll Call: Cision, Kraft, 360 Public Relations, and More

Cision‘s North American CEO, Joe Bernardo, has chosen early retirement and will be stepping down from his post, effective March 1. He’s been with the company for 13 years. Over the past year, he’s been shifting duties to Peter Granat, president and COO of Cision North America. Granat assumed that role in January 2011 after spending two years as CEO of Cision Europe. [via, h/t]

Perry Yeatman, head of global corporate and government affairs for Kraft for the past seven years, will step down from her post at the end of the year, following a spin-off of the company’s snack business. Nancy Daigler, the SVP of business unit corporate affairs will lead corporate and government affairs for the grocery division and Ernest Duplessis, VP of corporate communications, will serve as VP of corp comms for the snack division. [via Holmes Report]

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10 Online Influencers in the Fight Against Heart Disease

Sharecare, the healthcare Q&A network launched by TV’s Dr. Oz and WebMD creator Jeff Arnold, has used its partnership with WCG to compile a list of the 10 most influential people online in the fight against heart disease. With help from the SharecareNow tool and in the spirit of American Heart Month, the list identifies ten people, including writers, consultants, and doctors, who are raising awareness and sharing information about this fatal disease.

Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the U.S., taking the lives of 500,000 each year.

After the jump, we have an infographic that lists the influencers and data about the disease.

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Roll Call: HuffPo, CampaignOn PR, WCG, and More

The Huffington Post’s comms head, Mario Ruiz, has left the company after five years to launch his own firm. The Huffington Post is his first client. CapitalNY has the memo.

CampaignON, which specializes in campaigns at the state and local level, has entered into a joint venture with Weiss PR Associates to create CampaignOn PR. This new organization will provide PR services for CampaignON clients. [via]

WCG has added four new hires. Leslie Wheeler has been named practice leader, joining the firm from Weber Shandwick division DNA Medical Communications. Courtney Walker joins WCG as group director. She was previously at Edelman where she served on the senior leadership team for the Pfizer account and helped Prevnar 13 prepare for FDA approval. Dr. Cira Montreys joins from Evolution Medical Communications where she was chief medical officer. She’ll serve as group medical director at WCG. And Shelley Parsons joins WCG as group director, creative from DDB Remedy where she worked on healthcare accounts.

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Roll Call: Kyodo PR, WCG, Business Wire, and more

Akira Yamada has been named the president and CEO of Kyodo Public Relations, one of the largest firms in Japan, after the company’s founder Sakae Ohashi stepped down following a financial scandal. An investigation found that Ohashi embezzeled money to repay personal loans. Two board members have also left the company. Yamada says a corporate governance group has been established. Ruder Finn partnered with the firm in November[via Holmes Report]

H-P CEO Meg Whitman has hired Henry Gomez as chief comms officer and EVP. The two have a long relationship that extends back to her work at eBay and her run for California governor. The relationship even spawned the moniker “Menry.” AllThingsD has the press release.

Michael Frohlich has been named Ogilvy PR‘s MD of the EAME region’s consumer marketing practice, a newly-created position. Frohlich was previously with the Bell Pottinger Group, which recently ran into trouble over some secret footage. He’ll join the firm in February. [via]

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Working Together to Improve Online Health Info

Dangerous cantaloupes?

A quick look at the health headlines on Google News this afternoon turned up the following headlines: “Diabetes shame plus denial a risky combo”; “As listeria death toll hits 29, question becomes: When will it end?”; and “Ridding body of old ‘zombie’ cells slows aging process, study shows.” Living in a bubble can start to sound pretty good.

According to a Pew Internet report published in May, “The Social Life of Health Information, 2011,” 59 percent of all adults have looked online for information about any of 15 topics related to a disease or a treatment. And a quarter of adults have read someone else’s POV on a health issue.

We spoke with Bob Pearson, chief technology and media officer at WCG about the use of social media in healthcare PR. This week, WCG announced a partnership with Sharecare a healthcare Q&A platform.

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WCG and Sharecare Partner on a Digital Healthcare Tool

PR and corp comms firm WCG has partnered with Sharecare, a healthcare Q&A platform, to introduce Sharecare Now, a digital platform that will analyze the discussions happening online and determine healthcare trends, insights, and influencers. The tool is also a media monitoring and research tool for those in the healthcare space.

The two organizations will also publish the “SharecareNow 10,” which will list the top 10 influencers on various health topics.

Sharecare was created by TV’s Dr. Mehmet Oz and Jeff Arnold, and made news for its practice of tapping the expertise of healthcare pros at companies like Pfizer as “knowledge experts.” Those relationships caused a stir when The New York Times reported on possible conflicts of interest. More recently, Business Insider listed Sharecare as one of eight “startups shaking up the healthcare industry.”

Pharma Company’s Humorous Take on Infertility

With help from its PR firm WCG, EMD Serono, a Merck pharma company, is jump starting a previous campaign focused on fertility issues with a new initiative, “Birds & Bees: The Real Story.” A Facebook page is at the center of the campaign, and it features a funny rap video starring a couple in a bird and a bee costume.

From what I understand, this isn’t usually a topic that people chuckle over. The press release for the campaign emphasizes that issues with conceiving are common and usually treatable, few with IVF. But still, a rapping bird and bee?

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