Snacks giant United Biscuits has appointed Hill & Knowlton on a
pan-European corporate and public affairs brief.
The firm, whose brands include McVitie's and KP Foods, appointed H&K to
the newly created account following a pitch in which eight agencies were
invited to tender.
Corporate affairs was previously handled in-house but was disbanded by
UB following its takeover by the Final Realm consortium last year.
This is not understood to have resulted in any redundancies, with all
in-house corporate PR staff being redeployed in other departments.
Public affairs was previously handled by sole operator Michels Warren,
who declined to repitch.
As part of H&K's brief, it will be UB's lead PR agency and co-ordinate
the company's other agency relationships across Europe and the UK.
UK agencies include CirKle Communications, which handles trade PR,
Revolver handling KP Snacks and Leedex Euro RSCG for KP Nuts.
H&K corporate and business communications MD Felicity Howard Allen said:
'It has not yet been decided whether we will have one strategy across
Europe with some minor local tweaking or to look at it country by
The H&K team reports to UB chairman and chief executive Malcolm
UB is still reviewing its consumer brief for McVities, which was left
vacant following the resignation of Lexis PR from the account last
Lexis had represented the brand for four years. The agency's CEO last
month insisted the parting was amicable (PRWeek, 2 November).