Jul 12, 2019 / by Alister Houghton

Here’s a bumper round-up of PR news from the past two weeks, including highlights from CommsCon X Insights, new hires at BCW and Cognito and wins for instinct, MRM and Mischief.


CommsCon X Insights


If you were not able to make it to CommsCon X Insights, or want a reminder of the great insights from our speakers, watch our highlights video and read our review of the event and individual sessions:



Rich Leigh, founder of Radioactive PRdiscusses the agency’s first year working a four day week, the importance of ROI and why he changed his named to Mr Public Relations.

Karen Robson, head of marketing communications at AXA UK, and Pippa Strutt, head of external communications at AXA PPP Healthcarereveal the story behind the brand’s #InMyCorner campaign.


Karen Robson


Mia Hodgkinson, senior content producer and copywriter at The Property Buying Companytalks about her role, changes in the property sector and her drive to increase the sector’s diversity.


PR case study


Find out why The PHA Group took the unusual step of avoiding national media to help generate cut-through for the key messages surrounding last year’s Responsible Gambling Week.


People news

BCW has appointed The Sun‘s deputy political editor Steve Hawkes as head of strategic media in London. Hawkes will be part of the agency’s issues and public affairs team, reporting to the division’s managing director, Nick Williams.

KWT Global has promoted co-founder Gabrielle Zucker to the position of president. She will be responsible for staff leadership, business development and operational excellence across the agency’s New York, London and Toronto offices.

PRCA deputy director general Matt Cartmell is to leave the organisation to launch an agency providing content and communications services.

Financial services and tech specialist agency Cognito has appointed Sebastian Mathews as EMEA managing director. The consultancy has also promoted Yvonne Maher to deputy managing director.

Black Sun has hired David Treahearn as head of digital delivery. He will work alongside the agency’s client partners to provide a holistic, integrated approach to client service.

Cheshire-based agency No Brainer has announced three new hires and a number of promotions. Rebecca Sweeney joins the agency as an account manager, while Will Catterall and Helen Lang have both been hired as account executives. No Brainer has also promoted Lauren Pritchard to account director, Michelle Turner to senior account manager, Hannah Jones to account manager, Emily Craig to senior account executive and Melissa Philips to operations and projects manager.


(L-R) Helen Lang, Rebecca Sweeney and Will Catterall


Property specialist Building Relations has appointed Katie Herbert as an account manager.

Faith PR has hired Cherelle Jones as an account manager. She will work across a number of the agency’s key accounts.


Cherelle Jones


Account wins



M&S Food has appointed instinct to launch the retailer’s “Little Shop” customer campaign. The agency will develop an integrated comms campaign spanning celebrity endorsement, influencer partnerships and a press office function.

A&O Hostels has appointed The Brighter Group, a Finn Partners Company to launch and manage its UK B2B and consumer PR activity.

Investment platform Willis Owen has appointed MRM to assist its expansion and client acquisition plans via proactive and reactive PR, comms and social media.

Meal delivery service HelloFresh has appointed Mischief as its retained consumer PR agency. Mischief will provide proactive and reactive press office support.



Promote PR has been selected as the lead agency for an integrated marcomms campaign promoting the London 2019 World Para Swimming Allianz Championships.

Discover Puerto Rico has appointed Hills Balfour to represent it internationally, providing PR, marketing and trade support.

Whiskey investment firm Whiskey & Wealth Club has appointed Milk & Honey PR to build awareness among would-be investors and key industry insiders.

Access:VFX, the organisation which looks to drive diversity and inclusion in the visual effects, animation and games industries, has appointed Red Lorry Yellow Lorry as its global PR agency.



Software development firm Dev Clever has appointed The PHA Group to handle its UK PR and comms. The agency will increase Dev Clever’s exposure and brand awareness in sector-specific markets, including education, brand marketing, leisure, business and technology.

Brown’s Hotel in Mayfair has selected Samphire Communications to handle PR for its food and beverage offering.

Stand Agency has announced two new client wins. The agency will deliver a three-year comms programme for the Institute of Groundsmanship, while also handling a PR campaign for the Engineering Development Trust which will last until the end of the year.

Hemp brand Celtic Wind Crops has hired Kazoo to launch the brand in the UK. The agency’s brief encompasses consumer PR and social, with the aim of raising awareness around the Celtic Wind brand and helping to educate the media and consumers about what CBD oil is and how it can best be used.

Luxury Australian womenswear brand Lee Mathews has appointed Aisle 8 to handle its PR.

Global exhibition engagement company Expo Stars Interactive has appointed Unhooked Communications to manage its ongoing PR activity.

Basware, the networked purchase-to-pay and financing services firm, has selected Good Relations to launch a thought leadership initiative.

Temporary power generation and temperature control equipment supplier Aggreko has appointed WPR to handle its UK comms strategy.



Mondays, a subscription service aiming to create “plastic-free periods”, has appointed Seymour PR to handle its launch brief.

Camron PR has announced two new client wins. The agency will handle PR for high-end hotels group Proper Hotel and American designer Kelly Wearstler.

Leadership and soft skills training specialist Corporate Learning Solutions has appointed Fourteen Forty to raise its profile among c-suite, HR and specialist sector audiences.

The Intermediary Mortgage Lenders Association has appointed Rostrum to a retained PR brief aimed at raising the association’s profile within the mortgage market.


Agency news

FleishmanHillard Fishburn has developed a youth and culture offering to help brands connect with up-and-coming audiences, sitting within its UK brand marketing division. The offering will be headed up by Lauren Winter, partner and head of brand & consumer marketing EMEA, while associate director Claire Barry will lead the team day-to-day.

Integrated comms agency Beattie has created a standalone event management division. Sarah Ballantyne will manage the division after being promoted to head of events.

Food and drink specialist agency William Murray has launched a consumer arm following new client wins and the appointment of Sarah Harding as an account director. Harding and fellow account director Emma Hawley will lead the new division.

Medical comms firm Cactus Communications has launched Impact Science, a new service which aims to build an ecosystem to enable academics, technical journals and professionals societies to better share research papers to a wider audience.

SERMO, the communications network founded by TALK.GLOBAL, has signed up South African agency Eclipse PR and fellow M&C Saatchi Group agency M&C Saatchi PR Milano as partners.

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About Alister Houghton

Alister Houghton is UK Content Marketing Manager at Cision, writing and commissioning thought leadership, interviews and opinion pieces covering the earned media, marketing and journalism spheres. As well as working in a variety of roles across the business, he has previously managed media and web content for the British American Football Association.