H&K launches new global corporate response group

NEW YORK: Hill & Knowlton has launched a global corporate response group as a result of the Wall Street crisis.

NEW YORK: Hill & Knowlton has launched a global corporate response group as a result of the Wall Street crisis.

The group developed after the agency recorded a growing number of requests over the last six months from new and existing clients for a senior group of communications professionals to provide a swift response to issues arising from the economic turmoil.

“News is moving so quickly that the response to it… has to be immediate and cross audiences,” said H&K chairman and CEO Paul Taaffe, who will lead the group. “This will never go away, [but] the demand is more pronounced right now.”

The global, multi-specialist group will counsel CEOs and communications directors on a variety of issues including restructuring and asset disposal, employee motivation, and reputation. The group will draw from the firm's specialists in the areas of analyst relations, government affairs, crisis communications, and other groups. Taaffe said the group is already working with clients but he declined to name them.

“Most multinational don't have the infrastructure to communicate across a number of geographies and a number of constituencies in real-time and receive advice from corporate issue practitioners who have been through recessionary times,” Taaffe said. “The members of this core group have all been through one if not two recessions and have helped companies navigate reputations through that period.”

It will have regional hubs in London, New York, and Hong Kong.

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