Edelman adds consumer healthcare arm in London

Edelman PR Worldwide's London office has created a consumer

healthcare division, with a target of earning the firm £500,000 of

business in its first year.



UK chief executive John Mahony claimed the 'equity' the agency possesses

in the consumer health sphere as a driving factor in the decision to

launch.



He cited the success of the agency's American arm in this sector.

Edelman handles global accounts for Johnson & Johnson contact lenses and

Kimberly-Clark babycare products, and launches its UK consumer

healthcare division with five clients.



Mahony blamed the delay in introducing the division in Europe on the

reluctance of client companies to talk to consumers through

agencies.



He conceded the rising value of the sector was pivotal to the move,

adding: 'In a recessionary environment, healthcare and consumer are huge

growth sectors.'



The agency will, he said, be targeting market leadership, and look to

the 'major players' of the industry as clients, citing GlaxoSmithKline,

Pfizer, Roche and Novartis as firms with which Edelman will seek to

work.



Edelman senior consultant Rose Black - recruited three months ago to

oversee the creation of the division - heads the consumer health

offering, alongside MD and consumer head Ashton Coleman-Smith and

healthcare director Nigel Breakwell.



The division consists of 12 staff drawn from the firm's consumer and

healthcare divisions.



Mahony took over the running of Edelman London last month when his

predecessor Tari Hibbitt stepped down to go freelance (PRWeek, 28

September).



His stated aim on taking the role was to double fee income at the

independent agency to £25m within three years.



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