Unilever comms chief Kerr quits for Reed position

FMCG giant Unilever is on the hunt for a UK head of comms following the resignation of Patrick Kerr, who is to join publisher Reed Elsevier as deputy director of corporate communications.

Kerr takes up the post in January and will replace Susanna Smart, who is retiring. His responsibilities will include producing the company’s annual report, managing the AGM, public affairs, PR and internal comms.

He will report to director of corporate relations and communications Catherine May.

Kerr said: ‘This role gives me a broader remit than the one at Unilever. It gets me into financial and corporate comms.’

During his two years at Unilever, Kerr’s remit was focused on public affairs and media relations. Prior to Unilever, he was director of corporate communications at Finnish telecoms firm Sonera Zed.

One of Kerr’s responsibilities will be to uphold Reed’s right to charge for access to its scientific data following lobbying by a California-based group of scientists for free access to all scientific information.

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