Railtrack bidder selects FD for corporate business

The Government's bid vehicle for Railtrack has enlisted the support

of City PR firm Financial Dynamics to build relationships with the media

and stakeholders.



The non-profit company limited by guarantee - known as CLG - which has

been set up and is sponsored by the Strategic Rail Authority, hired FD a

week after naming Victoria Pender as its inaugural director of

communications.



Pender oversees the role alongside her existing job as director of

corporate affairs for Tube Lines, which is one of the private consortia

bidding to take over the infrastructure of London Underground.



FD won the brief after a competitive pitch, believed to have been

against at least three agencies.



The firm is tasked with overseeing a broad-ranging remit, handling CLG's

corporate communications, media strategy and financial PR.



Pender said CLG is in the early stages of preparing its bid for

Railtrack and the PR remit will evolve as the bid progresses.



'We are looking for support on the external side in terms of media

handling,' said Pender.



'At the moment we are just talking to people, but when we are clearer

about the bid process and what it is we're going to be offering, there's

a job in terms of talking to the industry and stakeholders to ensure

they understand what it is we have to offer.'



She added: 'As a private company, we would be reinvesting any

operational revenues we make back into the network to meet the needs of

the people who use it. We want FD to look at ways to communicate

this.'



FD director Andrew Lorenz, the former Sunday Times business editor,

heads a team of three on the brief, reporting directly to Pender.



CLG last week announced the appointment of outgoing Tube Lines CEO Iain

Coucher as its first MD. Coucher will continue in both roles until the

end of next month when a successor will take over at Tube Lines. In the

interim, Pender will continue in both her roles.



At CLG, Coucher will work alongside Ford UK boss Ian McAlester, who

chairs the bid team, to prepare an offer for Railtrack.



CLG is so far bidding against only one definite competitor - the

German-led consortium Swiftrail.



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