WSW cost-cutting means chop for Clarke

Weber Shandwick Worldwide has axed its Asia-Pacific boss Alison

Clarke as part of a cost-cutting drive.



Clarke, the agency's Asia Pacific CEO and a former president of the IPR,

leaves this week after being given the news that her role is to be cut

amid a number of senior redundancies and changes.



The move spells promotion for Europe CEO Lutz Meyer, who will head all

international operations outside the US, including the Asia-Pacific

region.



Meyer, who will remain based in Germany, takes on the role of

international chief executive, reporting to global CEO Harris Diamond in

New York.



The moves follow the internal announcement last week that WSW central US

chief executive Barbara Molotsky is to be made redundant.



Diamond said the cost-cutting measures come as a result of the merger

between WSW and True North's BSMG Worldwide last year. He said a

'realignment' of the organisation was underway.



Harris said further announcements are to come on structural and

reporting line changes in the Asia-Pacific region following Clarke's

redundancy, alongside appointments in Europe.



Clarke, who is placed on gardening leave from today, said she will 'take

some time out' and consider her options.



She added that she is not ruling out in-house or consultancy roles,

either in the Asia-Pacific region or elsewhere.



Clarke took on the Asia-Pacific chief job, based in Singapore, two years

ago, as successor to Charles Lankester, now the founder of independent

PR consultancy Limehouse Partners.



Prior to taking on the CEO role, Clarke founded and ran UK agency

Welbeck PR, which was snapped up by WSW and integrated into its network

in December 2000.



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