The International Platinum Association has appointed a PR agency
for the first time as the trade body seeks to increase awareness of the
metal's uses besides jewellery.
GPC International, whose MD Kevin Bell will oversee the account, has
been appointed to run a major public affairs and communications
programme for the non-profit organisation on a global basis. The account
is said to be worth close to £1m in fees.
The work will be run on a day-to-day basis by GPC London director Sandy
McLean who will oversee a team of seven consultants based in London,
Berlin and Brussels and from sister firm Fleishman-Hillard in
IPA managing director Marcus Nurdin, who made the appointment, said: 'We
have decided more needs to be done to make people aware of contribution
platinum makes - some people say one in five products would not be
possible without the involvement of platinum in key parts of the
McLean said: 'People often think of jewellery when they hear "platinum"
- our challenge is to get the word out about its other uses. It is used
in anti-cancer drugs and as a catalyst in various chemical and
industrial processes, as well as in catalytic converters in cars.
'We will be using traditional comms vehicles: media relations and
contact programmes. The key audiences are policy-makers, opinion-leading
media, and groups like environmental NGOs,' she added.
Nurdin said the point of the exercise was to encourage people to think
more positively about platinum - and other metals in the same group such
as Palladium and Osmium - and be more prepared to use them in developing
The IPA is based in Frankfurt and handles industry-wide issues for the
mainly South Africa and Russia-based mining and refining firms. The
appointment follows a competitive pitch, but Nurdin would not reveal the