Arun Sudhaman 02 Aug 2012 // 11:00PM GMT
PALO ALTO, CA--HP is conducting a review of its PR agency arrangements amid the merger of its PC and printer units.
The Holmes Report understands that the tech giant is currently in talks with firms regarding their global capabilities. There is no formal brief, but the process is expected to include a procurement exercise.
HP’s imaging and printing group (IPG) business is currently handled by Porter Novelli in the US and Edelman in Europe. In Asia, the business is split between firms, including Porter and Hill + Knowlton Strategies.
The PC unit (PSG), is handled globally by Edelman. Last year, HP slashed its corporate agency roster, shifting the business into Burson-Marsteller, which also handles its enterprise (TSG) division. HP also works with Abernathy MacGregor in North America.
A source familiar with the process said that HP may opt to consolidate its multimillion dollar PR spend with a smaller group of agencies, or shift business within the existing roster.
An HP spokesperson declined to comment. The IPG-PSG merger was confirmed by HP earlier this year, and will see the creation of a new printing and personal systems group, headed by PSG EVP Todd Bradley. The company previously combined the units under Carly Fiorina in 2005, although that decision was later reversed by her successor, Mark Hurd.
Leo Apotheker, who led HP briefly as CEO last year, announced plans to spin off the PC unit. Current CEO Meg Whitman, though, believes that the merger will “create a winning scenario for customers, partners and shareholders.”
HP’s public relations operation has seen plenty of change in recent years. Last year, CCO Bill Wohl departed the firm, succeeded by former EBay comms head Henry Gomez.