LONDON: UK-based property giant Hammerson has switched its corporate PR to FTI Consulting as it readies a slew of UK initiatives.
PRWeek UK has learned that the firm switched its retained PR agency from Brunswick earlier this year. FTI picked up a separate brief in recent weeks to handle PR for the billion-pound Hammerson/Westfield joint retail venture in Croydon.
FTI is thought to have picked up company-wide work without a competitive pitch, bringing an end to Hammerson's relationship with Brunswick after more than a decade.
The Croydon retail development is run by a separate team, which appointed FTI after a competitive pitch.
Morgan Bone, director of corporate communications at Hammerson, confirmed FTI was providing “strategic comms advice,” though the firm's in-house team continues to handle day-to-day communications and financial calendar work. Bone, who joined Hammerson from Fishburn Hedges in 2009, said FTI will focus on gaining the same level of traction within the retail media as the firm enjoys with the property media.
Dido Laurimore, MD at FTI and an international real-estate specialist is leading the account.
The move coincides with a number of large-scale projects Hammerson is planning across the UK. In addition to the Westfield Croydon joint venture, the company has submitted plans for a leisure project in Southampton, a retail development in Leeds, and last week it increased its stake in Birmingham's Bullring Centre to 50%.
Meanwhile, FTI has hired back Jonathan Earl from Powerscourt to become MD in its Dubai office.
Earl led the financial services team at Powerscourt, after joining the agency in November 2010. He previously worked at FTI in the Middle East between 2007 and 2010 and also formerly managed financial and corporate communications across Vodafone's international networks.
This story originally appeared on the website of PRWeek UK, the sister publication of PRWeek at Haymarket Media.