John Brown Contract Publishing, which publishes in-house
publications for Ikea, Orange and Waitrose, has appointed newly-created
Frontrow Communications as its first retained PR agency.
The agency was appointed without a competitive pitch on the strength of
Frontrow managing director Maria Blake’s background and experience. She
is a former fashion director for Conde Nast’s Tatler and Vanity Fair and
for the Guardian and Observer newspapers. She is also a former MD of
advertising agency Rapier and set up Frontrow in May.
The agency will report to John Brown chief executive Andrew Hirsch. ’We
are currently on a fast track expansion across all titles. We felt this
is the right time to bring in an agency,’ he said.
’In the past, public relations for John Brown was handled by individual
advertising managers and editors and on an ad hoc agency basis at the
publisher,’ said Blake.
The press relations brief will principally focus on raising the
company’s profile within the marketing media and national press and
raising Hirsch’s profile.
John Brown has recently expanded the reach of its biggest title, for
furniture business Ikea, into the US and across Europe - in France,
Germany, Italy and Spain. It now has a circulation of 2,371,000.
The publishing company was founded in 1987. It employs 150 people and
has a projected turnover in excess of pounds 20 million for 1999/2000.