McGibbon lands global PR position within Hilton Group

Hilton Group's recently-appointed global PR chief Leslie McGibbon is to hire four regional PR heads as the leisure group attempts to bring a 'more co-ordinated' approach to its global communications.

McGibbon, who took up the newly-created global PR head post this month, takes charge of PR for the group's 400 hotels around the world.

Hilton uses a range of agencies in each territory and McGibbon said agency relationships would be 'something he would be looking at'.

He denied there were plans for a formal review or global pitch 'at this stage', saying that was an issue that would be looked at in the second half of 2003 at the earliest.

McGibbon - formerly director of comms for Hilton UK and Ireland, a role he held for two years - will handle PR for Hilton and Scandic hotels, including the Hilton Worldwide Resorts chain.

He said his role had been created to 'ensure a co-ordinated approach to PR across 77 countries', adding that his primary aim was to appoint a comms head for each of five global regions.

One such appointment has already been made: Andy Collingridge has claimed the UK and Ireland role formerly held by McGibbon.

McGibbon is now seeking to appoint comms heads for the EMEA, Asia-Pacific, Nordic and Americas regions.

McGibbon said he was also aiming to boost inter-regional communication, such as better dissemination of best practice and greater sharing of media information.

McGibbon reports to group director of corporate affairs Alex Pagett and Hilton International CEO Anthony Harris, both of whom are based, alongside McGibbon, in at the group's global HQ in Watford.

Collingridge - who started in his new post this month - is handling PR for 77 hotels and overseeing six PR staff.

Collingridge, who reports to V-P marketing UK and Ireland Hugh Taylor, spent the last three months of 2002 as a freelance in Hilton's PR division.

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