LONDON—Stephen Carter is giving up his position as chief executive of corporate and financial public relations specialist Brunswick to become chief of strategy and principal adviser to Prime Minister Gordon Brown, a newly-created position that is believed to be equivalent to a chief of staff role.
The appointment is being viewed as an admission that the Prime Minister, who took over from Tony Blair six months ago, needs to shake-up his team of advisors and bring in an outside perspective. Brown drew particularly stinging criticism for his decision not to hold an election in October, and more recently for loss of two discs containing personal date, problems with immigration, Northern Rock and an inquiry into potentially illegal loans to the Labour Party.
British newspapers are reporting that Carter will be paid £137,000 a year, the standard amount for most Cabinet ministers but much less than his package at Brunswick, where he is believed to have been earning around £1 million a year.
Before joining Brunswick, Carter was managing director of NTL, the troubled cable broadcaster and chief executive of the media regulator Ofcom. He left that job in October 2006.
According to Brown: "As both a chief executive and industry regulator, [Carter] has an enviable track record in the private and public sectors, and will bring his considerable qualities to the work of government."