Reuters brings in headhunter to find global PR director

LONDON: Reuters has hired London headhunter firm Spencer Stuart to find a successor for its global corporate communications director Peter Thomas, who will retire in February after 32 years with the news agency.

LONDON: Reuters has hired London headhunter firm Spencer Stuart to find a successor for its global corporate communications director Peter Thomas, who will retire in February after 32 years with the news agency.

Thomas' role is the most senior PR position within Reuters. Thomas presides over media and investor relations, marketing communications, and internal communications.

Reporting directly to the executive board, the post heads a team of 24 in offices around the world, including London, New York, Frankfurt, and Singapore. Thomas also currently oversees the company's roster of outside agencies.

Whoever takes over Thomas' role will face a tough challenge in boosting confidence in a company that has suffered heavy losses due to the economic downturn.

This year, shares in Reuters have fallen to 12-year lows, and more than 2,000 staffers around the world have lost their jobs. This week, it was announced that a further 300 jobs were being cut in the US.

On the communications challenges facing Reuters, Thomas explained, "Against a background of very difficult markets that we don't see changing in the short term, the key is to continue promoting the company and to communicate its strategy going forward in the simplest way possible, as it's a complex company."

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