CHICAGO—GolinHarris became the latest large PR firm to establish a presence in the Middle East with the opening of an office in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
In December 2002, Weber Shandwick announced an affiliation with Fortune Promoseven Network’s to create a network with 14 offices in 12 Middle Eastern countries. In March of last year, Edelman forged an alliance with ASDA’A Public Relations, one of the region’s leading public relations firms with 10 offices, and a few weeks later Burson-Marsteller announced a partnership with Bates PanGulf Public Relations, based in the United Arab Emirates. Other firms, like Hill & Knowlton, have had a presence in the region for many years.
“For over a decade now, the public relations industry has been witnessing tremendous growth in the Arab world,” says Fred Cook, president and chief executive officer of GolinHarris. “We’re excited about our venture in this part of the globe and are looking forward to growing our reach and capabilities.”
Gregory Tikhanoff, regional managing director of GolinHarris in the Middle East, will be leading the firm’s growth in the Middle East.
The Dubai office consists of 10 employees, specializing in a number of areas including corporate communication and brand marketing. The office will be led by Ziad Hasbani, managing director and already has an established client base, servicing a number of local and international brand names including Al Habatoor Motors, Bally, Chopard, Omega and Revlon.