Italian PR firm SEC Group enters Iranian market after lifting of sanctions

Italian PR agency SEC Group claims to be the first Western comms firm to enter the Iranian market since the historic lifting of sanctions earlier this month, signing a "co-operation agreement" to support Iranian consultancy and training firm PAT.

Iran's capital city, Tehran: open for Western business (Credit: Ajber)
Iran's capital city, Tehran: open for Western business (Credit: Ajber)

A deal between the US, the EU and Iran, agreed on 14 July, saw Iran agree to reduce its nuclear activities in exchange for lifting sanctions, leading the way for the country to open up to global companies.

In a statement, SEC Group said it had "signed a co-operation agreement with the Iranian company PAT to provide support to its current and potential clients on the Iranian market, which was recently opened following the Joint Plan of Action and the consequent lifting of the sanctions".

The agreement is effective immediately and "makes SEC and PAT privileged spokespeople for all companies, organisations, institutions and people that have an interest in discovering the new opportunities that will arise as a consequence of this historic development", according to the PR company.

SEC Group added: "The green light to the agreement signed by the United States and the European Union will bring important business opportunities in an economy that is already worth $400bn [£256bn] and on a stock market worth $100bn. International observers estimate that just in the first year after sanctions about one billion dollars will be invested in Iran."

According to its website, PAT, or Pishgaman Andishe tose’e, was set up in 2005, working in consulting, training and event management. SEC said PAT operates in Italy, Iran and the UAE and has served more than 30 out of 50 major Iranian companies in the past three years, working on projects including Expo Milan 2015.

SEC Group, which owns firms in Brussels and Madrid alongside activities in Italy, has clients across a broad range of industry sectors, from charities, universities and governmental organisations to consumer brands, banks and professional bodies, and is looking to further expand its overseas footprint.

SEC MD Cesare Valli said: "SEC is particularly happy to announce this strategic agreement so as to be able to support all Italian companies interested in Iran and, through our network, those European companies that might need assistance in the areas of public affairs and institutional relations on this very important market that opens to the world."

Hamidreza Amininasab, MD of PAT, said: "Our company has been operating successfully for many years on the Iranian market, in the United Arab Emirates and in Italy, facilitating business exchanges with Iran and providing strategic consultancy and training to companies.

"Through this strategic agreement with SEC, we broaden the sphere of our services in the field of communication consulting, increasing also the operational capability of the European countries in which SEC operates. Together, we can value even more the great business, social and cultural opportunities that this market opening will bring."

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