CHICAGO--Groupon has hired former Hill & Knowlton CEO Paul Taaffe as its new global comms chief.

The move comes around one year after Taaffe abruptly ended his 18-year tenure with the WPP firm.

At Groupon, Taaffe succeeds Brad Williams, who quit the deal website last year and has since resurfaced at Weber Shandwick.

According to Bloomberg, Taaffe's arrival may help steady a company that has suffered numerous "publicity mishaps". In addition to a controversial Superbowl ad last year, Groupon also violated SEC "quiet period" rules ahead of its IPO.

Taaffe joined H&K as UK chief executive in 1992, becoming EMEA president in 1994 and worldwide CEO in 1998, before moving to New York in 2002.