Arun Sudhaman

Working the angles around media, comms and marketing.

Beleaguered News Corp Calls In Edelman For PR Counsel

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LONDON–News Corp has called in Edelman to help it deal with the debilitating crisis brought about by the phone-hacking scandal.

Edelman EMEA CEO Robert Phillips told the Holmes Report that the agency had been retained by News International’s management and standards committee, which has been set up to oversee its response to the unfolding crisis.

The committee is comprised of News International GM Will Lewis, corporate affairs director Simon Greenberg, and general counsel Jeff Palker. The trio report into Joel Klein, the News Corp lawyer that has been charged with clearing up the hacking allegations, the police criminal inquiry into phone hacking and the range of civil actions that beset the UK arm of Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp.

Phillips told the Holmes Report that Edelman’s support was primarily “logistical”. “Edelman is working with the management and standards group of News Corp on general comms support and public affairs counsel,” he said.

Phillips declined to elaborate further. The News Corp crisis has continued unabated, despite the company’s  dramatic decision to shut down the News of the World tabloid last week. Earlier today, News Corp shelved its bid for full ownership of BSkyB.

News Corp deputy chairman Chase Carey said that the bid had become “too difficult to progress in this climate”.

News Corp’s decision came as MPs were about to debate a motion supported by all major parties – calling on Murdoch to scrap the bid. The motion was approved without a vote.


Written by Arun Sudhaman

July 13, 2011 at 11:27 pm

Posted in Crisis, PR

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Moving home

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It is finally time to pack up my efforts here and move them over to the Holmes Report’s lovely new website.

When I started this blog, I never really expected it to amount to much. But once I started using it to break news, while the Holmes Report site was being redeveloped, traffic steadily rose – and now I have more subscribers than I ever dreamed of. I am hopeful that all of you will join me over at my new home, and at my new blog.

I will be doing everything that I’ve done here over at the new website, and a few more things too. Unsurprisingly, your comments, interaction and eyeballs will be even more critical as we continue developing the Holmes Report’s content platform. Thanks!

Written by Arun Sudhaman

April 3, 2011 at 5:23 pm

Posted in The Holmes Report

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Immediate Future halves workforce and revamps model

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Immediate Future, one of the UK’s first social media agencies, has halved its workforce as it relaunches its business model to focus on higher-margin consulting work.

The news comes as long-term IF client Sony confirmed that it had moved the bulk of its business with the agency back in-house. Sony EMEA director of corporate communications Nick Sharples said that the company would continue to work with IF on “more strategic social media consultancy , such as issues and crisis management training incorporating full social media integration, rather than the normal day-to-day PR implementation”. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Arun Sudhaman

March 29, 2011 at 12:25 pm

Weber Shandwick wins PR for Munich 2018 bid

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Munich has called in Weber Shandwick to provide PR support for its bid to host the 2018 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.

The win comes after Weber Shandwick’s successful campaign on behalf of Sochi’s bid to host the 2014 Winter Olympics. Weber Shandwick also handled successful campaigns by Beijing 2008 and Turin 2006, and also recently supported England’s bid for the 2018 World Cup. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Arun Sudhaman

March 28, 2011 at 4:24 pm

South Africa hands global reputation assignment to H&K

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Posted to the Holmes Report here

South Africa has called in new PR counsel as it bids to sustain the global reputation uplift it experienced from last year’s successful staging of the Fifa World Cup.

The Holmes Report understands that Hill & Knowlton has been appointed by the country’s International Marketing Council (IMC), to oversee the global ‘Brand South Africa’ programme. The agency displaces incumbent MSLGroup Johannesburg, which won the £1 million account less than two years ago. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Arun Sudhaman

March 25, 2011 at 4:07 pm

Bahrain hires new US PR support

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Posted to the Holmes Report here

The Kingdom of Bahrain has called in fledging public affairs firm Potomac Square Group to handle US public relations as unrest continues to rock the Middle Eastern nation.

Potomac Square Group – a new firm headed by ex-Wall Street Journal journalist Chris Cooper – was appointed in February to provide strategic PR counsel to the Embassy of Bahrain in the US.

Earlier this week, the Holmes Report revealed that Edelman’s US assignment on behalf of Bahrain’s Economic Development Board (EDB) had been suspended. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Arun Sudhaman

March 25, 2011 at 12:07 pm

Paratus/Vodafone relationship ends

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Paratus, the 12-person agency that netted Vodafone’s six-figure UK PR business 12 months ago, is to step down from the account at the end of the month.

Vodafone has instead called in Freud to handle specific projects for the mobile company’s corporate communications team. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Arun Sudhaman

March 24, 2011 at 5:25 pm

Huntsworth delivers flat revenue growth in 2010, buys Atomic PR

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Posted to the Holmes Report here

Huntsworth – the PR and healthcare communications group that owns Grayling, Citigate, Huntsworth Health and Red – has reported that its revenues dipped by 0.7 percent in 2010, following a major restructuring of the business.

The group has also revealed it has acquired highly-rated US technology and digital agency Atomic PR, providing a much-needed boost to Grayling’s North American footprint. Previously, Huntsworth operated a joint venture with Atomic PR, which oversaw the brand’s European operations. Red Consultancy’s US operations have been transferred into Atomic, which will eventually be combined into Grayling North America.

Huntsworth has also confirmed that Grayling has taken lead agency duties on British Airways’ global PR account, as first revealed by the Holmes Report. It is understood that this business will be worth approximately £1.5 million in fees per year, and will be operated in conjunction with Action Global and Meropa. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Arun Sudhaman

March 23, 2011 at 10:40 am

Ricoh reviews agencies in PR expansion

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Posted to the Holmes Report here

Japanese electronics company Ricoh is rethinking its engagement strategy in EMEA, calling an agency pitch as it seeks to expand its corporate PR activity in the region.

The pitch comes two years after Burson-Marsteller won the six-figure mandate. The agency is believed to be defending the brief, with budgets expected to rise. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Arun Sudhaman

March 22, 2011 at 5:49 pm

Meltwater moves into digital marketing with JitterJam buy

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Monitoring outfit Meltwater Group has acquired social CRM firm JitterJam for $6 million, marking a significant step for the company into the digital engagement arena.

Based in Bedford, New Hampshire, JitterJam provides a blend of social analytics and CRM – with a particular focus on digital influencer marketing. Meltwater Group CEO and founder Jorn Lyseggen said the purchase was part of an overall strategy to grow the company’s social media revenues to $100 million within the next three years. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Arun Sudhaman

March 22, 2011 at 12:34 pm