City & Corporate: Retailer PPR calls in Cubitt for IR

PARIS: Europe's biggest non-food retailer Pinault-Printemps-Redoute (PPR) has dropped IR firm Taylor Rafferty and hired Cubitt Consulting for group investor relations.

The move follows the defection to Cubitt of Taylor Rafferty co-founder and managing director Bernard Campagnon.

PPR vice-president of communications and corporate affairs Thomas Kamm said he hired Cubitt after Campagnon was appointed as the agency's co-head of investor relations at the end of last year.

The move brings to an end PPR's four-year relationship with Taylor Rafferty and could threaten its relationship with Brunswick, which was hired last October (PRWeek, 22 October 2004).

Kamm said Brunswick had been hired for corporate comms and to raise PPR's profile with the financial media following the agency's work for PPR-owned Italian fashion brand Gucci.

'It is not our intention to end our relationship with Brunswick,' Kamm added. 'But I can't comment on what might happen over the next six months.'

Brunswick was originally hired to a US and UK brief, leading to speculation that PPR was planning a listing.

On Monday, Francois-Henri Pinault, the son of PPR founder Francois Pinault, took over as PPR chairman following the exit of Serge Weinberg to set up an investment fund. Pinault's appointment combines the two roles of chairman and chief shareholder.

PPR's main brands include Parisian department store Printemps and French retailer fnac.

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