Poland has pursued a policy of economic liberalization for the past decade, and by the time it was admitted into the European Union this summer was regarded as the greatest success story among the transition economies of Eastern Europe, thanks largely to the privatization of small and medium sized state-owned companies and a liberal law encouraging the establishment new firms, both of which have encouraged the development of the private business sector. So it’s not surprising that Poland now has more first-rate indigenous public relations firms than any other Eastern European country, including On Board PR, founded in 1996 and now established among the top 10 in the market according to Warsaw Business Journal’s listings.
On Board has a team of 25 full-time PR consultants, led by managing director Norbert Ofmañski, a 12-year marketing veteran who has led marketing projects for companies including Telekomunikacja Polska, Fiat Auto Poland, Kredyt Bank, and Pharmacia. His team includes Norbert Kilen, strategic development director; client services director Dorota Ciszek; and account directors Iwona Kubicz and Monika Jas³owska. The firm is a member of Zwi¹zek Firm Public Relations (the Polish consultancy association) and many of its employees are members of either IPRA or ICCO.
The year since Poland’s accession to the European Union (in May of 2004) has been extremely busy, and On Board has almost doubled in size, as Polish business leaders recognize the need for increasingly sophisticated, strategic public relations activity. Revenues will be around €700,000 this year, thanks to new business from clients such as domestic appliances company Bosch, real estate company Raiffeisen Evolution, brewer ¯ywiec Group, gaming company Electronic Arts, and office products manufacturer Esselte. They join a roster that includes Polish pharmaceutical company Adamed, Pharmacia, USB Pharma, electronics equipment store Zibi, and IVAX Corporation.
Some of the most interesting assignments were educational efforts in the healthcare field, including “OdnaleŸæ Siebie” (Find Yourself”), G³êboki Oddech (Deep Breath), Zdrowe Zatoki (Healthy Sinuses) and “Bezpieczne Stosowanie Leków”(Safe Administration of Medicines). The firm also won an IPRA Golden World Awards in the public affairs category for its Safe Administration of Medicines campaign on half of UPPO.
On Board is the Polish member of the ECCO Public Relations network.