International News in Brief (October 23, 2006)
Charting the future of public relations
Holmes Report
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International News in Brief (October 23, 2006)

Belgian public relations and public affairs firm Interel has created a crisis hot line that will enable companies and institutions to call into action a team of consultants specialized in crisis communications 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Paul Holmes

BRUSSELS—Belgian public relations and public affairs firm Interel has created a crisis hot line that will enable companies and institutions to call into action a team of consultants specialized in crisis communications 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The service will be available both to Interel’s clients and to any other company or institutions requiring immediate assistance with crisis communications. According to the company: “Crises virtually always happen at the worst possible times, whether on Friday afternoon, at night, on the weekend or during a holiday. While a crisis is usually an unexpected event, the risk of exposure is compounded when it occurs outside of office hours since the media, e-mails and the Internet work 24 hours a day.”

ISTANBUL—Lobby PR, a Turkish public relations and public affairs firm, has entered into a strategic agreement with Maussen Communications & Public Relations of Amsterdam.  “There is a globalization trend going on in PR,” says Omer Uzun, general manager of Lobby PR. “We both have the same opinion: PR is nor solely about media relations but about managing the relationship between a company and its public and audience, and we have to do that according to international standards.” Bart Maussen, managing director of the Dutch PR firm, adds: “Turkey and The Netherlands are already strong business partners and we think that we can build bridges between the two cultures.”

SINGAPORE—Hill & Knowlton has hired Faith Brewitt as director of its technology and digital practice in the Asia-Pacific region. Based in Hong Kong, Brewitt will provide strategic counsel to regional clients and in collaboration with H&K’s sub-regional technology leaders will drive growth in the company’s largest and most valuable sector.  Brewitt is currently based in Shanghai with Fleishman Hillard, where her roles have included general management of the Shanghai office and heading up the regional technology practice. Prior to coming to Asia, Brewitt was based in the U.S., where she was director of communications at Pogo Linux and several years of consultancy with Edelman USA.

LONDON—YouthNet, one of the U.K.’s early pioneers of online advice, information and guidance, has hired Bell Pottinger Business & Brand to boost its public profile. The charity, founded by former newsreader Martyn Lewis in 1995, engages young people through two websites that provide advice and support for 16-24 year olds. According to Fiona Dawe, YouthNet chief executive, “Bell Pottinger Business & Brand’s role will be to help us tell more people about YouthNet, the technology we use and the fact that we offer two great platforms where young people can network, be informed and also be inspired to achieve their ambitions and dreams.”

TORONTO—Direct Impact Marketing has chosen High Road Communications as its public relations agency of record. High Road will work closely with the company to forge an integrated strategic PR program designed to raise brand awareness for the company including U.S. and Canadian media relations and fostering industry interaction. Direct Impact is a provider of outsourced B2B lead generation services for marketing and sales executives.

LONDON—Good Relations Consumer has been appointed by Roland keyboards to launch the company’s new Video Interactive Multimedia Application keyboard, which enables users to put their own choice of images to their own choice of music.

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