INTERNATIONAL: Travade takes PR reins at bookmaking body

PARIS: State-run bookmaking firm Pari Mutuel Urbain (PMU) has appointed its first communications director, Bruno Travade.

PARIS: State-run bookmaking firm Pari Mutuel Urbain (PMU) has

appointed its first communications director, Bruno Travade.



Travade, 45, joins the firm from the organising committee of the

football World Cup, where he was director of press and

communications.



He will report to PMU’s president, Bertrand Belinguier, and oversee a

17-strong team covering press relations, PR and advertising.



PR and advertising were previously handled separately by respective

heads Sophie LeMouel and Christian Ract, who will both report to

Travade. LeMouel said: ’Until this appointment, we were in an unusual

situation: being the seventh largest service company in France and the

first games firm in France, but without a communications directorate.

Our PR and advertising departments were not even united

geographically.’



PMU’s decision to create a communications director is part of the

company’s new business plan, put in place over the past year following

the appointment of Belinguier as president and Patrick Gatin as director

in April 1997.



Before working for the World Cup, Travade spent 15 years at car group

Volkswagen-Audi France, where he was most recently marketing and

communications director.



PMU has a monopoly of horserace betting in France. Its board members

include alternate representatives from the French ministry of finance

and the economy or from the ministry of agriculture. Also represented on

the board are horseracing companies such as France Galop and trade

associations like the national federation of horseracing companies.



Last year PMU recorded a turnover of around pounds 3.45 billion. It

counts 7,800 sales outlets across France and an additional 220 shops

with live links to race clubs or tracks.



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