Italian home appliance firm Merloni - manufacturer of the Indesit and Ariston brands - has hired City PR firm Financial Dynamics to strengthen perceptions of the firm in the UK.
The agency has been tasked with handling all UK corporate PR, reporting to Merloni's UK management, led by managing director John McDarren and head of corporate communications in the company's Italian headquarters, Andrea Prandi.
Financial Dynamics will work alongside Merloni's incumbent pan-European agency, Edelman PR Worldwide, which also handles UK crisis communications, and Buckinghamshire-based agency Deborah Risbridger Associates, which oversees UK consumer and trade PR.
Merloni, which ranks third in the European white goods sector (after General Electric and Electrolux), handed FD the brief with a view to raising its profile among consumers.
Last week, the firm, which is listed on the Milan Stock Exchange, had record results showing profits up 34 per cent and revenues up 12 per cent last year to just over pounds 1bn.
But, according to the group, its profile is disadvantaged in the UK as it is neither a UK-owned nor a London-listed company.
'Our challenge is to strengthen perceptions of Merloni among UK retailers and business audiences, identifying it as the name behind the Ariston and Indesit brands, underpinning the marketing of these brands to consumers,' said FD corporate practice partner Jon Aarons, who heads the four-strong account team.