Hill & Knowlton acquires Miami communications firm

10 Jun 2002

Hill and Knowlton Inc., the international public relations agency, today announced the acquisition of Miami’s SAMCOR Communications Company, further expanding the firm’s Latin American network. The company will operate as Hill and Knowlton/SAMCOR, continuing under the management of Cori Zywotow Rice, its president and founder.

Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

SAMCOR, based in Coral Gables and covering the Greater Miami Area, started operations in 1996. In this short period SAMCOR has become a major presence in the Miami communications business. Known for outstanding client service and expertise, SAMCOR has captured relevant brand name clients across all categories, including Sunbeam Corp., Mr. Coffee, UDV, Wyndham Hotels & Resorts, Spherion Corporation, and others.

"Miami is a market that has become an intercontinental cultural bridge and a major business hub for this hemisphere," said Howard Paster, chairman and CEO of Hill and Knowlton. "Hill and Knowlton/Samcor will be part of our fast-growing Latin American network while working very closely with our U.S. offices for local Miami business and to expand our services to the Latino/Hispanic market in this country."

"We believe that Cori and her team will make an immediate impact on our operations both in the U.S. and our expanding network in Latin America. At the same time SAMCOR and its clients will benefit from the support of our worldwide infrastructure, " Paster concluded.

Since becoming a separate business region in 1998, Hill and Knowlton’s Latin America has formed a network of owned and operated offices that represents all major business centers in the area: Argentina, Brazil, Chile and the Andean countries, Guatemala and Central America, Mexico, Puerto Rico and Uruguay in addition to its headquarters in New York City. This network is supported by professional associations with local companies in Venezuela and Colombia. In the U.S., Hill and Knowlton has 17 offices in 16 cities across the country.

Zywotow Rice said, "SAMCOR’s nimble entrepreneurial service will now be enhanced by the powerhouse infrastructure of H&K which will make the agency even more attractive to existing and new clients. We will adhere to our successful business model based on superior client service, but now we will have the additional resources to offer a wider range of services. I am proud to join the Hill and Knowlton family."

Zywotow Rice graduated from the University of Pennsylvania. She began her career as a broadcast news reporter and later served as the first female civilian spokesperson for the City of Miami Police department. She then joined Burger King Corporation and became a senior executive leading its global communications function.

Celebrating its 75th anniversary this year, Hill and Knowlton Inc. (www.hillandknowlton.com) a leading international public relations and public affairs firm, provides services to local, multinational and global clients. The firm is based in New York, with 66 offices in 35 countries, as well as an extensive associate network. The agency is part of WPP Group plc (NASDAQ: WPPGY, www.wpp.com), one of the world’s largest communications services groups. Hill and Knowlton was recently named "Agency of the Year 2001" by The Holmes Report.