Market Access has landed British Airways’ pounds 50,000 a year
lobbying contract - dashing the hopes of AS Biss and Co that it might
hold onto the business.
Industry sources suggest that BA may have been attracted by the firm’s
carefully cultivated New Labour credentials - managing director Mike
Craven is a former aide to deputy leader John Prescott and an adviser to
leader Tony Blair.
Another client of Market Access’ transport unit, which is headed by
Peter Moore, is the airports authority BAA.
Des Wilson, BAA’s director of public affairs, denied suggestions that
there could be a conflict for Market Access in working for both
organisations and said the agency had sought his permission to pitch for
the account in advance.
BA’s move brings to an end its ten-year relationship with the team at
Ian Greer Associates - many of whom moved over to AS Biss and Co last
year in the wake of the cash-for-questions affair and Greer’s withdrawal
from a libel suit against the Guardian newspaper.
It is understood that BA had already decided to review the account
before the collapse of IGA.
BA declined to confirm the appointment of Market Access. A BA spokesman
told PR Week: ’We don’t have a contract with any lobby organisation’.