PN is latest major US firm to cut staff

NEW YORK: After a period of relative calm, major agencies are once more making sweeping staff cuts, possibly signifying a worrying double-dip economic downturn in the PR industry.

NEW YORK: After a period of relative calm, major agencies are once more making sweeping staff cuts, possibly signifying a worrying double-dip economic downturn in the PR industry.

Following last week's news of cuts at Fleishman-Hillard, Porter Novelli has laid off 40 employees across US offices this week. A combination of attrition and selective reduction, the cuts were spread evenly among practices and geographic locations.

"I suspect our need to reduce staff is similar to what has been going on at other agencies," explained Gary Stockman, president of PN North America.

Indeed, the UK press reported last Thursday that Incepta - owner of financial agency Citigate - has cut 150 jobs, or 7% of its workforce. The majority of the layoffs - approximately half of which occurred in the company's 24 UK offices - happened within the Citigate portion of the business. Agencies under that name in the US include Citigate Sard Verbinnen and Citigate Cunningham.

Calls to Incepta's senior management were unreturned at press time.

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