Charting the future of public relations

Dukas Public Relations

Holmes Report

Holmes Report

Dukas Public Relations founder and president Richard Dukas has more than two decades of experience in the public relations business, working in-house (most recently as director of corporate communications for Amerindo, a technology investment management firm) and with leading agencies (Ruder Finn and Morgen-Walke) and strong credentials in financial communications—particularly media relations. So in its four years, Dukas PR has garnered a reputation as a small firm capable of getting “under the hood” of its clients’ business to understand what makes the tick and subsequently generating big top-tier media results. “It’s the Media Matters,” says the firm in its marketing material—a double entendre that signifies an understand that clients want media results, but that the focus must be on getting the right message into the most appropriate media venues.
 Dukas Public Relations enjoyed its best year to date in 2006, in part because of the strengthening of its technology practice with the addition of senior vice president Todd Barrish, who joined from Connors Communications and helped to bring in seven new tech accounts, including IncrediMail, Blip.tv and Bandwidth.com. But the firm’s professional and financial services practice also expanded, adding Danielle Rumore from Bliss Gouverneur & Associates and the addition of new business from XTF Advisors, Lane Berry International and the Credit Union National Association, joining a roster that already includes Radvision, Blue Mountain Capital Management, Michael Steinhardt (hedge fund manager and latterly philanthropist), Laurus Funds, and Havens Advisors. Revenues for 2006 were $1.3 million, almost double their 2005 level, and the firm is on a run rate to hit $1.8 million in 2006.
 There were several interesting assignments in 2006, including a media relations campaign for Radvision, generating coverage in The Wall Street Journal and on Jim Cramer’s Mad Money (and helping to boost both trading volume and market cap); proactive outreach for Havens Advisors, a relatively small hedge fund with disproportionate share of voice; and public relations support for blip.tv, website that hosts and distributes video-blogs and Web-based TV shows. But perhaps the work that Dukas is most proud of is the firm’s work to launch a new non-profit campaign, Madness Against Malaria, modeled after the NCAA’s March Madenss college basketball tournament: companies are invited to enter fund-raising teams. Dukas has its own team and has recruited three of its clients (including Steinhardt) as well as handling media relations for the cause.
 Clients, meanwhile, find Dukas “smarter, more agile and more subtle of mind” than other firms. Says one hedge fund client: “In terms of generating contacts with our target audience, we got fact to face sit downs with prominent journalists at the Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, Bloomberg (including TV), Forbes, and Fortune in fairly short order.” For most clients, those are the media that matter.
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