FT global comms director Gilpin-Jacobs to step down

LONDON: Emma Gilpin-Jacobs will step down from her role as global director of communications at the Financial Times next month after nearly seven years at the company.

LONDON: Emma Gilpin-Jacobs will step down from her role as global director of communications at the Financial Times next month after nearly seven years at the company.

Gilpin-Jacobs will leave the Pearson-owned financial publishing group at the end of July. She is considering a variety of opportunities and aims to take a new role in January after spending time with her family this summer, she said.

The media company did not immediately announce a replacement.

Gilpin-Jacobs joined the FT Group in 2006 and was appointed board member as part of the company's recognition of the importance of communications in its global development strategy.

She was responsible for managing and delivering the FT's global strategy with specific oversight of external, corporate, brand, and internal communications, leading a team of 14.

Gilpin-Jacobs also identified and initiated the process of developing a global
strategy for recognizing the Financial Times' 125th anniversary this year, which included turning the Empire State Building the outlet's trademark salmon pink color.

Just last month, Gilpin-Jacobs was named the UK Chartered Institute of Public Relations' PR director of the year.

She said she is leaving the company of her own accord, and the move is not related to layoffs there.

“When I joined seven years ago, communications at the FT was very different, and while the brand wasn't in decline, it wasn't in the healthiest of states,” Gilpin-Jacobs said. “Since then, we have implemented tough changes, such as charging for content at a time people threw their hands up in horror at this, and putting up prices to reflect the quality of the journalism.”

Gilpin-Jacobs' departure comes at a time when speculation about Pearson potentially selling the Financial Times is rife after longtime CEO Marjorie Scardino stepped down last year.

At the start of this year, the Financial Times Group announced a “digital first” strategy, described in an email by editor Lionel Barber as a “new cultural shift.”

As part of this strategy, the company put a voluntary redundancy program in place to cut about 35 existing editorial jobs, while creating 10 digital roles. It recently rolled out a rapid news service called “Fast FT.”

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