PR to be a major casualty of P&G cuts

CINCINNATI: Procter & Gamble's corporate PR budget is being slashed

by 10% to 15% as a result of its recently announced corporate

restructuring plans.



'Corporate functions will see the greatest cutbacks,' said Linda Ulrey,

a senior manager in P&G corporate communications. PR comes under that

banner.



'We will look to smaller centers of in-house expertise and look to

increase outsourcing,' she said. That could mean more work for PR

agencies as P&G scales back in-house staff. But the search for cost

savings could also mean a re-examination of how many outside agencies

are used - a move other companies, such as Sears Roebuck, have

undertaken in recent years.



P&G announced March 22 that it planned to cut 9,600 jobs worldwide and

trim between dollars 600 million and dollars 700 million in expenses

annually by fiscal 2003/2004. The cuts come on top of plans announced in

1999 to cut 7,800 employees.



P&G currently has no PR agency of record and instead works with scores

of agencies on a project basis, such as Fleishman-Hillard,

Cincinnati-based Northlich Communications and Porter Novelli.



P&G spent dollars 12.5 billion in 2000 on marketing, research and

administration, a broad budget category that is thought to include PR.



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