Propaganda
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Propaganda

Holmes Report

To western ears in particular, the word “propaganda,” particularly in the context of its association with the former Soviet Union, has a host of negative associations. The founders of CCT (Center of Communications Technologies) Propagnda are aware of those associations and untroubled by them. The name is a conscious attempt to reclaim the term, and the firm’s website offers an etymological examination, pointing out that in Latin propaganda refers to the dissemination of ideas and knowledge “by way of meticulous and in-depth learning; explaining and convincing the general public of the necessity of something.” The firm insists it has never regretted its decision to rehabilitate the term and stakes its claim with some defiance: “We have undertaken a difficult commitment: to fill the word ‘propaganda’ with a new meaning, to help you establish communications and have a new look at public relations.” 

Now celebrating its 10th anniversary, CCT Propaganda launched in 1998, into the teeth of a financial crisis that saw many multinational public relations firms pull out of the Russian market. The firm’s founders were able to turn crisis into opportunity: investing in growth at a time when others were scaling back, Propaganda quickly established itself as one of the leading Russian consultancies focused primarily on Russian clients, becoming a member of the IMA Group (one of the largest communications holding companies in the region), earning industry recognition (including a Silver Archer award for its work helping to develop a code of ethics for TNK company), and offering a broad range of services including corporate and business communications, public affairs and political consulting, and brand marketing. 

The firm is led by founder and chairman of the board Dmitriy Gnatyuk, who founded IMA’s publishing house and worked in political consulting before launching Propaganda; general director Andrey Stepanov, who served as a management and technology consultant before joining the firm as general director in 2004; and deputy general directors Galina Sidorova, a former government press officer, and Olga Bezgodova; and chief development officer Nickolay Sapronov. Clients include giant Russian retailer Lenta; Rosmorport (which manages Russian sea ports), the Khanti-Mansiysky autonomous region-Ugra, home to much of Russia’s mineral wealth; MT-Development, developer of one of the most ambitious resort projects in Russia; the Russian Cycling Federation; TNK-BP; and Congress Management. 

Earlier this year, the firm began a programme of regional growth, expanding its reach throughout

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