By Arun Sudhaman
LONDON: Weber Shandwick has been named global PR agency-of-record for the GSMA, the powerful trade association behind the Mobile World Congress.
The agency succeeds 15-year incumbent CC Group, which declined to repitch for the business. The review, which featured several global networks, was first revealed by the Holmes Report in October last year.
GSMA media relations director Claire Cranton confirmed the shift and said that Weber Shandwick will take charge of a “multi-faceted communications programme, including media and analyst relations.”
The agency, added Cranton, will work with the UK-headquartered GSMA across its key global markets.
Specialist UK tech agency CC Group consolidated the entire account in 2009, when it displaced Hill & Knowlton’s hold on the GSMA’s mobile broadband campaign account.
“Over the past 15 years we’ve helped the organisation successfully evolve from a technical standards body into a campaigning trade association,” said CC Group MD Richard Fogg. “Our decision not to re-pitch for the GSMA’s business has given us room to breathe and the ability to pursue other opportunities in the mobile space.”
The organisation’s PR centrepiece is the Mobile World Congress, which is held annually in Barcelona and attracts 47,000 people from around the world.
The GSMA claims nearly 800 mobile operators and 200 related companies among its members. In 2009, Telecom.com called it “one of the most powerful trade associations in the world, lobbying governments on everything from tax policy to pricing strategy”.