Arun Sudhaman 23 Mar 2015 // 9:22AM GMT
LAGOS—Hill+Knowlton Strategies has launched an operation in Nigeria to keep pace with burgeoning client demand in the country.
The new office in Lagos comes after H+K secured a multi-market assignment to handle PR duties for Twitter across the Middle East and Africa. The Holmes Report understands that Twitter has tasked H+K with helping overcome barriers to use in nine countries across the region, including key markets such as Nigeria, Kenya, South Africa and the UAE.
Twitter does not reveal region-specific numbers, but growth in the Middle East and Africa has been robust, estimated at 54% by the Arab Social Media Report. The company is expected to open an office in Dubai soon.
In addition to Twitter, the firm's new Nigerian operation will also handle client work for P&G, Shell and MasterCard. The firm has hired former Oando communications chief Tokunboh Durosaro as managing director to lead the new Lagos office.
To date, only a handful of international PR agencies have launched an owned presence in Nigeria, with many wary of high costs and difficult operating conditions.
"Global businesses with long-term growth strategies are focusing on the African continent," said Lars Erik Grønntun (pictured), chairman and CEO of H+K Strategies EMEA. "Nigeria has the largest economy in Africa, as well as a population of 170 million people which is expected to expand to 200 million by 2019. Hill+Knowlton’s presence in the Nigerian market will ensure that businesses have access to full-service communication strategies."
The Nigeria launch adds to H+K's existing African network, which includes Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Rwanda, South Africa, Tanzania, and Uganda.