City & Corporate: The Week in City & Corporate

Aon hires UK comms director, Cohn & Wolfe opens Middle East office

Aon has appointed Charles Willy as UK comms director. Willy has worked at the insurance giant for more than five years and was previously head of internal comms. His new role comprises internal comms, media relations, design, sponsorship and events and knowledge management. In addition to raising the firm's profile, the comms team has a key role to play in supporting its marketing campaigns and building greater employee engagement.

Cohn & Wolfe has opened a new office in the Middle East and North Africa. The new office will work across the financial, b2b, technology and consumer PR. Cohn & Wolfe merged with GCI Group earlier this year and the Cohn & Wolfe brand is now being adopted by the existing GCI Group offices in all markets.

AXA Direct and AXA Insurance in Northern Ireland has handed its PR account to MCE Public Relations after a competitive pitch. AXA Direct has ten branches across Northern Ireland and a call centre in Londonderry that services the entire Irish marketplace.

Bank of Cyprus UK has appointed Teamspirit Public Relations to provide b2b and b2c PR support. The agency will work with the firm's in-house marketing team to help deliver media relations that will mainly focus on the SME sector.

Two PR firms have found themselves embroiled in an international legal argument between Russian investment company Alfa Group (and its telecoms arm Altimo) and Norwegian telecoms firm Telenor. Last week a writ was filed in Pennsylvania by law firm Marks & Sokolov. The law firm claims that FD and its client Alfa/Altimo distributed a dossier alleging that international PR firm The PBN Company, Marks & Sokolov and others had been engaged by Telenor to spy on Alfa Group companies. The writ argues that the documents in the dossier were forgeries and some of the firms included did not work for Telenor.

Azure Global, a financial outsourcing provider, has appointed Kysen PR to advise on its marketing and public relations strategy. Azure, headquartered in Guildford and with operations in Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Guernsey, offers small and medium enterprises various offshoring options in lower-cost jurisdictions.

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