Diana Marszalek 29 Jan 2019 // 1:30PM GMT
NEW YORK — Ketchum eliminated as many as 15 positions across North America earlier this month in a round of layoffs resulting from organizational restructuring, the Holmes Report has learned.
The latest round of layoffs does involve senior executives, according to sources familiar with the situation, who added that the moves are part of a broader revamp of Ketchum's offering.
“As we continue to evolve to a communications consultancy, we are focused on aligning our talent with our current client needs. This unfortunately led to select staff reductions,” Ketchum said in a statement to the Holmes Report. “These decisions are never easy. We are grateful for the exceptional level of service that these individuals have given our clients and all of us over the years.”
The latest round of layoffs is less dramatic than we’ve seen from Ketchum in previous years. In late 2017, the agency significantly reduced the 64-person headcount at its founding Pittsburgh office after parent company Omnicom experienced consecutive quarterly losses in its PR division. The agency had already eliminated several positions across North America before that.
Business for Omnicom’s PR firms, however, was on the uptick in 2018, which was also Barri Rafferty's first year as Ketchum CEO. OPRG, which includes Ketchum, Porter Novelli and FleishmanHillard, reported growth during the first three quarters of the year (Q4 earnings have not been released yet) after struggling during previous years.