Boeing, the world’s largest aerospace and communications company,
is reorganising its international communications and bringing its UK
media relations in-house.
The company has reviewed its UK PR account, handled by APCO through the
Boeing News Bureau. In the middle of the review, the firm appointed
Matthew de la Haye as vice-president of international
De la Haye is Boeing’s first senior PRO to be based in London. A former
PR head for Lucent Technologies, he also has consultancy experience,
having worked for Ruder Finn on clients such as Microsoft, Novartis and
Citibank. He will now report to Judith Muhlberg, the company’s
Seattle-based communications vice-president.
De la Haye is expanding the company’s in-house provision globally. Until
now Boeing used a host of agencies in different markets.
De la Haye plans to appoint a UK communications director later this
year, together with a host of lower-grade staff and a communications
chief for Asia.
APCO’s remit - covering the commercial airplane group - has been
broadened to include the space and communications business and Boeing’s
military unit. The APCO team, headed by senior associate Debbie Thomas,
will now only provide strategic counsel.
’We are launching an effort to enhance our communications. We want
people to realise there is more to Boeing than just aeroplanes,’ de la
The company - which employs 200,000 staff worldwide and made sales last
year of nearly pounds 40 billion - hopes to generate coverage of its
research and development arm, Phantom Works, as part of this effort.
The APCO team is not being reduced since the agency hopes the expansion
of its brief away from purely civilian aircraft will offset the HR
implications of the news bureau’s closure.