GCI Jane Howard to drive PR push for Homebase

Homebase has switched PR firms to consumer shop GCI Jane Howard following its sale to private equity firm Schroder Ventures last month.

Homebase has switched PR firms to consumer shop GCI Jane Howard following its sale to private equity firm Schroder Ventures last month.

The home improvement chain decided to repitch the six-figure account after a change in brand strategy.

Homebase PR manager Hilary Grist said: 'The decision was made as part of a healthy business review following the sale before Christmas.

'One of our priorities is to develop a Homebase signature style, and PR will be increasingly important in achieving this.'

Incumbent consumer agency Camron PR was invited to repitch but declined.

GCI Jane Howard won the account following a five-way competitive pitch.

Agency managing director Jane Howard said it will set up a 365-day-a-year press office for Homebase and concentrating on consumer relations.

A team of six will work on the account, headed by Kate Hart.

Schroder paid pounds 416m in cash for Sainsbury's Homebase business plus another pounds 75m in vendor loan notes. Its 283 stores had operating profits of pounds 57m last year .

Schroder is believed to be revamping the chain to focus on soft furnishings, lighting and cooking merchandise.



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