Great Western hires Equinox PR

Train operator First Great Western, has appointed Equinox PR on six-figure fees to promote its pounds 80 million investment in 14 new trains.

Train operator First Great Western, has appointed Equinox PR on

six-figure fees to promote its pounds 80 million investment in 14 new

trains.



Cardiff-based Equinox was appointed after a six-way pitch on a 15-month

contract. During that period First Great Western plans to roll out 14

new high speed trains on its London to Cardiff service. The trains will

have a top speed of 150mph and are the first new high speed trains to be

introduced in the rail industry since privatisation.



’We will lead a drip feed of media activity on a budget that will be at

least pounds 100,000,’ said Equinox senior account director Heather

Gifford.



She heads a team of six on the account with a remit covering press

relations, community relations and event management. The agency reports

to First Great Western’s head of PR Elaine Wilde.



The appointment of Equinox is the first time in two years that First

Great Western has used an outside agency. The operator had previously

used financial agency Hudson Sandler.



Great Western Trains came into being when the rail industry was

privatised in 1996. In 1998 it was taken over by First Group.



’The high speed trains will enhance our existing fleet of trains and

help us fulfill our obligations under the franchise to run a half-hourly

inter-city service,’ said Wilde.



First Group this week announced pre-tax profits of pounds 121.5 milion

for 1999.



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