HONG KONG: Edelman PR Worldwide has emerged as the victorious agency in
the battle to handle PR for British Airways and Qantas.
Five agencies fought for the account, which was put out to pitch after
incumbent Hill & Knowlton had to quit because of a conflict of
It was appointed last month to work for Continental Airlines in the
Edelman has a brief to cover crisis and issues management, as well as
proactively promoting the two airlines and any new marketing initiatives
they may undertake.
The reporting structure is complex, with Qantas/BA marketing director
Nadia Stoyle overseeing Edelman's work in Hong Kong. The team also
reports to BA's headquarters in London, and Qantas in Sydney.
John Mullins, Edelman Hong Kong managing director, is ultimately
responsible for the account. But Anna Wan, a senior consultant who
worked on the Qantas account for Edelman Shanghai, will head the
day-to-day work, with two teams handling Qantas and BA separately.
These teams are headed by account directors Sophia Tso and Gary Yu, for
Qantas and BA respectively.
Stoyle described the pitch process as 'quite exhaustive', and said it
was difficult to track down agencies without client conflicts.
'I chose Edelman because three of the team members had direct airline
experience, and spoke both the language of PR and aviation,' she said,
describing the quality of the pitches as 'excellent'.
H&K will officially finish working for BA and Qantas at the end of this