London-based WPP has purchased Glover Park Group, the D.C.-based firm specializing in government relations and strategic comms that was started in 2001. The firm has a staff of 140 people, four offices in New York, Los Angeles, Boulder, CO, and Washington, and $60 million in annual revenue, according to Politico.
Posts Tagged ‘WPP’
WPP has launched a its School of Marketing and Communications in Shanghai in collaboration with the Shanghai Art & Design Academy (SADA). The school is the first in China to offer a three-year diploma for a marcomms program.
Fifty students have enrolled and classes started in September. More than 1,300 students applied. WPP will work with SADA on the curriculum and faculty hiring.
Also, WPP announced its earnings late last week, reporting a nine percent rise in Q3 revenue for the company and 7.2 percent for the PR and public affairs sectors. WPP is home to a number of PR firms including Burson-Marsteller and Hill & Knowlton.
Publicis Groupe, home to PR firms including MSLGroup, announced Q3 results today showing €1.42 billion in revenue (about $1.96 billion, by today’s currency conversion rates) and organic growth at 6.4 percent. Revenue has reached €4.12 billion (about $5.65 billion) year-to-date ending September 30. Organic growth has reached 6.9 percent for the year so far.
The company’s SAMS division generated 50 percent of revenue, up from 48 percent in 2010. This division houses Publicis’ PR and digital businesses, including Digitas. Digital generated 30.2 percent of the company’s revenues and experienced 12.9 percent organic growth for the quarter. CFO Jean-Michel Etienne told PRWeek that organic growth for the PR firms is between eight and 10 percent.
(Side note: With all of that digital activity, the company should revamp its website. It’s terrible.)
New business cited includes Microsoft, McDonald’s, and Coca-Cola. Organic growth was greatest in Latin America and Europe (8.5 percent and 8.2 percent respectively); North America came in at 6.3 percent.
Despite all of the good news, the forecast isn’t quite so rosy.
Anna Cahill Leonard has been named president of AxiCom U.S., a newly created role that will report to Cohn & Wolfe CEO Donna Imperato. Leonard will also be working closely with AxiCom Europe CEO and principal Julian Tanner and with certain key clients. Besides serving as the tech specialist network for Cohn & Wolfe, AxiCom is also part of WPP.
Leonard was previously COO and EVP of Blanc & Otis where she handled new business, managed the San Francisco Bay area operations, and managed client work including Cisco and Facebook. She has a career spanning 25 years.
AxiCom clients include Dell, Red Hat, and ZTE.
Readers and members of the media went ballistic called a foul when TechCrunch published a glowing review of Bitcasa, a company backed by Michael Arrington’s new CrunchFund. “This reads like a press release,” said one reader. [via The Atlantic Wire]
Sir Martin Sorrell, CEO of WPP, supports the launch of another Sunday U.K. paper to replace the now-defunct News of the World. However, readers shouldn’t expect Sun on Sunday until 2012 and Mail on Sunday has not gotten past the planning stages just yet. [via The Guardian]
Speaking of News Corp., James Murdoch will be recalled to testify before a parliamentary panel after discrepancies were found between his previous testimony and new evidence in the phone hacking scandal. And shareholders have filed an amended lawsuit against the company claiming it knew about “widespread misconduct.” Yikes and double yikes.
Abigail Pesta, Marie Claire editor-at-large, has joined Newsweek and The Daily Beast as editorial director for Women in the World, which has an annual summit and foundation. The group will be adding editorial content across The Daily Beast website. [via The Observer]
For more of the latest media moves click through.
WPP today announced its interim results for the six months ending June 30, 2011, with PR and public affairs showing 5.8 percent constant currency revenue growth and five percent like-for-like revenue growth. WPP PR firms include Burson-Marsteller, Hill & Knowlton, and Ogilvy PR.
PR and public affairs accounted for 9.1 percent of the revenue for the total group.
Overall billings were up 5.2 percent to about £21.4 billion (about $35.2 billion, according to today’s exchange rate) with reported revenue up 6.1 percent to £4.7 billion (about $7.7 million).
The U.S. and North America made a strong showing in the first six months, accounting for 35.6 percent of the company’s total revenue. Other geographic regions around the world also showed strong growth with challenges noted in Austria, Germany, Finland, and other parts of Europe. For more detail about the earnings report, click here.
Despite the growth, WPP CEO Martin Sorrell still warned of economic stumbling blocks in 2012.
Dick Fedorcio, the head of public affairs and internal comms for the Metropolitan Police Service, has been put on leave during an investigation of possible misconduct tied to the News of the World phone hacking scandal. The Independent Police Complaints Commission is looking into the relationship between Fedorcio and Neil Wallis, former NotW assistant editor Neil Wallis. [via The Guardian]
RF Binder has partnered with corporate responsibility expert and founder of Lilium Consulting, Susan Ellis. She is just one of the additions to the firm’s services in the corporate responsibility and environmental initiatives areas. RF Binder offers partnership development, brand alignment, and other services in this space.
Sabrina Guttman, who had joined Ruder Finn in May to lead the firm’s new tech and innovation practice, has left the firm. The firm’s VP of comms Katy Kelley told PRWeek that they will eventually look for a replacement global head.
The U.K.’s Guardian newspaper has published it’s top 100 in the media and there are some PR and communications pros taking spots on the list.
Max Clifford, the founder of Max Clifford Associates known for his work managing tabloid news and the PR for high-profile names like Simon Cowell, has moved up 10 spots to number 25. Matthew Freud, chairman of Freud Communications and husband to Rupert Murdoch’s daughter Elisabeth, is at number 31. And Alan Parker, the founder and chairman of powerful financial and corporate comms firm Brunswick Group, is in at number 65.
As we mentioned this morning, Mark Zuckerberg comes in at number one. Also in the top 10 are Rupert Murdoch, Steve Jobs, and the aforementioned Simon Cowell. For more of the marcomms leaders on the list, click here.
He was most recently the VP of global comms at General Motors and president of GM’s OnStar subsidiary. He worked with the company as it made its way through bankruptcy and restructuring. While at GM, he also held leadership positions for European communications, comms for Cadillac, among others.
At H&K, he’ll spend most of his time working with WPP on the Ford account, focusing on global product communications.
The 2011 Cannes Lions wrapped up this weekend and it looks like the PR industry has a lot of work to do to improve its showing in the years to come.
Israel Mirsky, Porter Novelli‘s EVP of emerging media and technology, told us previously that he thought the PR firms are still learning how to present themselves at these awards. Others share that opinion.
“For the third straight year in a row, the PR industry is still failing to represent itself as strongly as it should in its own category,” Renee Wilson, president of the northeast region for MSLGroup told Ad Age in an interview.
But it’s not just presenting the entries that require improvement. Some are saying that the resources required to enter are also an issue.