Aviva hires former Facebook and Google corporate comms chief in global role

Insurance provider Aviva has brought in former Facebook and Google comms chief Stefano Hesse as its new global digital communications director.

Stefano Hess joins Aviva after stints at Facebook and Google
Stefano Hess joins Aviva after stints at Facebook and Google

Hesse joined Aviva this month, following a six-year stint as Facebook's EMEA director of corporate comms.

Before that, he was head of corporate comms & public policy for Africa at Google, as well as its head of corporate comms & public affairs in southern Europe.

He also spent five years as an adviser at lyrics catalogue MusiXmatch between 2011 and 2016.

As part of the newly created role, Hesse will report to chief digital officer Andrew Brem and will work closely with group comms director Nigel Prideaux.

Hesse informed PRWeek that his appointment reflects Aviva's already-established "digital first" strategy.

Aviva, which is headquartered in London, had revenues of £23.7 billion in 2015 and provides insurance services to more than 30 million people across 16 countries.

It has offices in Canada, Ireland, India and France, as well as a number of subsidiaries throughout Europe.

Earlier this month, rival insurance provider Admiral ran into trouble after Facebook barred it from using social media data to inform policy prices.

The last-minute decision from Facebook came after Admiral had already publicised its new firstcarquote service.

At the start of this year, Facebook hired Blue Rubicon MD Chris Norton as EMEA comms chief.

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