Westminster Advisers shakes up staff line-up following review

Westminster Advisers has hired an associate director and two account directors after a strategic review and amid other staff departures.

Director hires: From left, Malcolm Sullivan, Mark Detre and Christine Quigley
Director hires: From left, Malcolm Sullivan, Mark Detre and Christine Quigley

The conclusion of the review, which was conducted late last year with input from former MHP chief executive Sacha Deshmukh, was that the agency should concentrate on health, energy, technology and London local government.

The agency is aiming for further growth following a 75 per cent increase in turnover from 2009, when MD Dominic Church led a management buyout from founder Doug Smith, to £1.4m last year.

Church said: ‘All of these represent areas of close involvement and funding by government and regulators far into the future and are therefore growth opportunities for public affairs.’

He added the review was also about reshaping the staff line-up away from ‘people who were not bringing in fees, especially at a junior level’ in favour of ‘more experienced consultants’.  

The agency’s energy offering will be led by former MHP account director Malcolm Sullivan, who joined as associate director earlier this month.

Energy was formerly headed by Gary Sargent, a director with 20 years’ experience of the planning, transport and infrastructure sectors. He departed in December to join crisis consultancy Regester Larkin as a director.

The technology practice will be led by Vodafone internal comms manager Mark Detre, who joined in April as an account director.

London local government will be led by Church, with healthcare managed by fellow company director Ian Targett.

The second new account director is Edelman Public Affairs account manager Christine Quigley. She will focus on London development and regeneration work. 

In two recent departures Church said were unrelated to the review, account director Gemma Stockwood is leaving to pursue a career in political TV programming, while account manager Alexandra Arikoglu has joined Luther Pendragon. The agency has also made redundant a senior account executive and an account executive. 

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