Weber Shandwick Worldwide's (WSW) financial PR division has forged
a strategic alliance with investor relations specialist Thomson
The aim is to offer existing and new clients across Europe, the Middle
East and Africa an integrated IR and financial PR service.
The project is being overseen by the WSW UK financial practice CEO
Charles Lankester, together with the TF/C international MD Kevin Brady.
Both principals have ruled out any share-swap and neither will take a
seat on the other's board.
However, they said there was scope for a significant alliance in
pitching for business, cross-selling to each other's clients and
integrating the services they each offer to create products aimed at
communicating client messages to the media, public and investment
The plan is to roll the joint service out across WSW's EMEA network in
Belgium, France, Holland, Spain, Switzerland and the UK, and to
affiliates in the Middle East and Africa.
It is the first time TF/C has struck such a deal. The company is a
subsidiary of the pounds 1.5bn provider of financial products, Thomson
Financial, itself a part of Canada's Thomson Corporation.
TF/C's network of offices is smaller than that of WSW, though there is
overlap with its branches in Amsterdam, Frankfurt, Brussels and
While the alliance is overseen by Lankester and Brady, much of the nuts
and bolts work involved falls to WSW associate director Mark
Llewellyn-Slade and Angus Prentice, TF/C strategic consulting MD.
Lankester said: 'The dividing line between financial PR and investor
relations is becoming increasingly blurred. We are acting on that.'