In brief: Virgin Media owner hires, Cohn & Wolfe's Paris boss, Edelman ups Suvanto

Virgin Media owner appoints, Cohn & Wolfe hires Paris chief, Edelman ups financial boss and more from PRWeek UK.

Virgin Media owner appoints

Julia Hart has joined Liberty Global, the owner of Virgin Media, as vice-president of external comms, based in Amsterdam. Hart, who will speak at PRWeek's PR360 event later this month, joins from paint and chemical multinational AkzoNobel. Liberty Global has also taken on Rebecca Pike, a former BBC radio presenter, as head of digital media. She will report to recently hired comms chief Guto Harri, the Guardian reports. Pike will join on 3 May.

Cohn & Wolfe hires Paris chief

Cohn & Wolfe has hired Paul Baeyaert as managing director, Paris. He will report to Scott Wilson, MD of Cohn & Wolfe EMEA. According to LinkedIn, Baeyaert has previously been CEO of Weber Shandwick Belgium and held other roles for both Weber and Hill+Knowlton Strategies, and spent 2015 running his own eponymous consulting business.

Edelman ups financial boss

Lex Suvanto has been promoted to the role of global MD of Edelman's financial comms and capital markets offering, a newly created role. He has been with the firm since 2013. Among his responsibilities will be overseeing recently acquired London financial agency Smithfield.

Speed takes Best Restaurants global

Speed Communications has been reappointed to manage PR for The World’s 50 Best Restaurants, an awards scheme run by publisher William Reed. Speed has been the brand's retained agency in the UK for the past five years, but now takes on a global role under the new deal, with the awards being held outside the UK this year.

Loxone appoints Wildfire

Tech PR agency Wildfire has been appointed by 'smart home' solution company Loxone. Loxone gives customers control over all of their systems and devices - including lighting, heating, security, music and blinds - via an app. Wildfire will handle UK PR for the German firm.

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