Volvo shakes up longstanding UK PR account with Bell Pottinger hire

Three months after naming Waggener Edstrom as its first AOR in the US, Volvo has moved its UK PR account from longtime partner Nobull Communications to Bell Pottinger after a pitch process.

LONDON: Volvo has handed work overseeing UK PR for its cars to Bell Pottinger as the company seeks to emphasize its premium credentials.

The car manufacturer has moved the retained account, handled by Nobull Communications for more than a decade, following a pitch. 

Volvo Cars of North America brought on Waggener Edstrom Communications as its AOR for the US at the beginning of the year with the goals of elevating cultural relevancy and telling its technology story. WE is the automotive brand’s first AOR in the US.

Bell Pottinger Group MD David Wilson will lead the work alongside consumer MD Will Powell, who was hired earlier this year as the agency seeks to grow in the tech and automotive sectors.

Work will include attempting to break out beyond the motoring press and into wider lifestyle media, with an increase in experiential work expected.

Wilson pointed to the revamp and launch of the XC90, an SUV set to be revealed towards the end of the year and in showrooms in 2015, as a key focus.

"We'll be working with the in-house team to help amplify a story about the sophisticated Swedish design of Volvo cars and the active outdoors lifestyle that they are designed to complement," he added.

The shift in the six-figure account will see Nobull continuing to handle an existing separate brief focused on dealerships.

Nobull director Steve Carman said that "Volvo is a valued client of ours, and we will continue to manage and support PR efforts around the Volvo dealer network."

This story originally appeared on the website of PRWeek UK.

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