PayPal reevaluates global product PR, US comms

As it emphasizes the transformation of the financial system from one based on physical cash to the digitization of money, PayPal is seeking a PR AOR for global product and US comms.

SAN JOSE, CA: PayPal is reviewing its account covering US comms and global consumer and merchant PR. MSLGroup, the incumbent on the business, was invited to re-pitch.

The RFP went out last week. The contract includes work on product brands PayPal, Venmo, Braintree, Paydiant, and Xoom. It also includes work within the technology, credit, and risk areas.

Anuj Nayar, PayPal’s global head of product communications, said via email that the RFP follows the debut of the company’s global ad campaign that debuted during the Super Bowl, entitled New Money. The spot emphasized how PayPal is handling "the greatest period of transformation" in the history of the financial system.

"[The system is] moving from physical cash to the digitization of money, from an exclusive system to one of inclusion, and toward a financial world that is faster, safer, more secure, and less expensive," Nayar added. "No company is better positioned to deliver the benefits of this transformation to consumers and merchants than PayPal." 

He said that as PayPal embarks on this "transformation," it has decided to evaluate its agency relationships for product communications.

"We look forward to hearing from a variety of agencies to further partner with us as we lead a transformation in the financial industry and highlight the ways that PayPal technology reimagines money so it can serve all of us," he added.

PayPal expects to make its selection by April.

In early 2013, PayPal selected MSLGroup as its AOR for North America. The Publicis Groupe firm will continue to support PayPal in Latin America and Canada.

Edelman will continue to handle corporate communications for the company. In March 2009, eBay hired the firm to work on its marketplace and corporate divisions in what was then a seven-figure account, following a competitive review. PayPal previously had a consolidated PR account with Access Communications.

PayPal separated from eBay last July. Although it originally opposed the idea, eBay decided in fall 2014 to spin off PayPal into a separate, publicly traded business. EBay said at the time that the move would allow both companies to capitalize on respective growth opportunities.

Since the split, PayPal’s comms team has gone through a number of changes. Last August, it brought on IBM veteran Ben Edwards to lead PayPal.com on a global basis, charged with explaining to consumers how the website works.

Before the spinoff, PayPal hired Amanda Groty from Hill+Knowlton Strategies as senior director of comms for EMEA, and Franz Paasche also joined the company as VP of corporate affairs. Paul Cohen signed up as VP and global head of corporate communications in May 2015.

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