FSO brings in Cresswell as first head of comms

The newly-created Financial Services Ombudsman (FSO) is to bring in David Cresswell as its first communications head.

The newly-created Financial Services Ombudsman (FSO) is to bring in

David Cresswell as its first communications head.



Cresswell takes up the post in December. He will have an open brief to

shape communications strategy for the new financial services

watchdog.



He reports directly to chief ombudsman Walter Merricks, who said

Cresswell’s first task will be to assess PR needs and suggest a

structure which can deliver effective communications across all its

audiences from government to consumer organisations and the public.



Merricks has already retained Fishburn Hedges (PR Week, 29 October),

which was brought in at the end of October to work on raising awareness

of the new body in the financial community.



The FSO will not be actively promoting itself to the public until it

comes into being sometime around autumn 2000. The FSO will be given the

power to redress consumer complaints under new government legislation

which ties together eight former ombudsmen that previously controlled

sectors such as building societies, banking, insurance and

investments.



Cresswell said: ’The FSO will solve confusion that has arisen as to

which watchdog to go to when problems occur.’



Cresswell will oversee the absorption of staff when the eight ombudsmen

physically merge into the FSO offices next year.



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