LONDON—UK firm Hanover has created a new position that aims to tap into an increasing desire from its clients for European policy advice.
The new director-level position is being assumed by James Gurling, who will now oversee European policy development. Hanover will launch a 'Future of Europe' service offering in 2014, amid growing demand from UK clients for counsel on the re-shaping of the EU and the commercial implications of the EU-US trade talks.
“James Gurling is one of the UK’s leading public policy specialists and has been tasked with helping clients navigate the complex single market and competency repatriation debate and the deregulatory implications of TTIP trade negotiations," said Hanover MD and founder Charles Lewington.
Gurling will work with Hanover Brussels MD Christian Hierholzer, whose clients include Shire Healthcare, BMS, the British Film Institute and the American Chamber of Commerce.
“We are clearly through the worst of the Eurozone crisis and that is being reflected by a sharp increase in budget being released for pan-European projects," added Lewington. "The Euro-elections in 2014, Commission changes and intense debate about the right level of regulation in the single market are of enormous concern to customers."
Gurling's previous position as head of Hanover's UK advocacy unit has been handed to director Laura Chisolm, who takes charge of a practice that includes such clients as Goldman Sachs, Lloyds Banking Group, BskyB, Airbus Group, Three, Microsoft and the John Lewis Partnership.
The moves come as Hanover aims to double its size within the next five years, after growing 30 percent in 2013, with fee income forecast to reach £6.7m for the year. Much of the growth has come organically from existing clients, although Hanover also won Tata Steel's corporate and public affairs brief earlier this year.
Hanover now has 55 consultants across its two offices. In London, key drivers have been the healthcare policy unit, led by Andrew Harrison, and the reputation team, which is overseen by former FA marketing communications director Gavin Megaw and recently hired Bloomberg journalist Gonzalo Vina.