Hill & Knowlton and Public Strategies to merge

15 November, 2010


• Joint capabilities strengthened in finance sectors and in public affairs, research, digital and financial services

• Firms will combine key management roles

NEW YORK — International communications firm Hill & Knowlton and business advisory firm Public Strategies, Inc. will merge January 1, 2011, into a distinctive global communications consultancy.

The two companies will combine leadership and cooperate closely to bring greater value across a diverse blue-chip client roster. Jack Martin, founder and chairman of Public Strategies, will become global executive chairman of H&K; Paul Taaffe will remain global CEO; and Dan Bartlett will expand his role to become President and CEO of H&K USA and Chairman and CEO of Public Strategies.

“We are excited about expanding on the global stage. This gives us a premier platform on which to showcase our leadership and further expand our offer of unique new business strategies for our clients.” said Jack Martin.

“Jack Martin and his colleagues at Public Strategies have built an amazing business that advises companies globally on their interactions with the public, having pioneered a business model that integrates key functions into a client’s overall strategy,” said Paul Taaffe, CEO of H&K. “Combining with Public Strategies gives H&K clients access to even more value as well as adding critical mass in the financial sector and research capabilities.”

"H&K and Public Strategies will be a formidable combination and industry leader - combining global expertise and talent with strong financial services, public affairs, research and digital capabilities aimed at chairmen, chief executive officers, chief marketing officers, and corporate communications executives in leading global, multi-national, regional and local companies,” said Martin Sorrell, CEO of WPP, the parent company of both firms.

Combined, the entities will have over 2300 employees and 83 offices in 44 countries. The merger formally will take effect January 1, 2011. Each company will retain its brand for the foreseeable future.


Contacts

Hill & Knowlton
Lori Robinson
Tel : +1 212 885 0324
Mob: +1 917 838 3938

Poppy Nagra
Tel : +44 (0) 20 7413 3021
Mob: +44 (0) 7956 169209

Public Strategies
Jeff Eller
Tel: +1-512-432-1910

About Hill & Knowlton
Hill & Knowlton, Inc. is a leading international communications consultancy, providing services to local, multinational and global clients. The firm is headquartered in New York, with 79 offices in 44 countries, as well as an extensive associate network. The agency is part of WPP, the world’s largest communications group.

About Public Strategies
Founded in 1988, Public Strategies helps leading global companies turn their corporate reputation into a competitive advantage by building trust with key public audiences through campaign, transaction and crisis management. The firm pioneered and developed a framework that examines and evaluates potential public impact on their clients’ business objectives. Public Strategies has been providing expert counsel to senior executives for more than 20 years. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, the firm has offices across the country and clients operating around the world.

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