EDITORIAL: It’s boom times for financial PR

While it is open market at the moment on specialist PR firms, the sale of GJW to BSMG stands out as a particularly shrewd deal on the part of the public affairs firm - particularly as this is the second time that the directors have managed to offload the company at what is ostensibly the top of the market.

While it is open market at the moment on specialist PR firms, the

sale of GJW to BSMG stands out as a particularly shrewd deal on the part

of the public affairs firm - particularly as this is the second time

that the directors have managed to offload the company at what is

ostensibly the top of the market.



It was back in 1987 that the directors first sold the company for pounds

5 million, only to buy it back six years later for pounds 1 million. In

this latest deal with BSMG, the company comes with a price tag of pounds

7-pounds 8 million. A neat trick.



GJW’s credentials, particularly in the area of competition and

regulatory work, are impeccable. The loss of Rory Chisholm to Finsbury

means that CEO Andrew Gifford may have to take a more hands-on role in

this area however.



Across town BSMG’s loss is Finsbury’s gain. The fast-growing financial

agency plans to use the appointment of Chisholm as a springboard for the

launch of a dedicated regulatory and public affairs practice.



The marriage between financial PR and public affairs is hardly

revolutionary and agencies such as Financial Dynamics and Brunswick have

accumulated substantial regulatory expertise. But at present most tend

to migrate that expertise from mainstream financial PR as competition

and regulatory issues arise.



The London markets are particularly strong at the moment, while the

fluidity of European markets offer the potential for an increasing

amount of cross-border work. With the creation of a separate unit

marketing competition and regulatory expertise, Finsbury is well poised

to take advantage of a buoyant market, particularly if it can firm up a

European dimension.



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