Hoffman wins rest of HP biz

PALO ALTO, CA: Hewlett-Packard has named The Hoffman Agency as its sole agency of record for the e-Services Solutions (ESS) group. The account, reportedly worth several millions in annualized fee revenue, was previously shared with Citigate Cunningham.

PALO ALTO, CA: Hewlett-Packard has named The Hoffman Agency as its sole agency of record for the e-Services Solutions (ESS) group. The account, reportedly worth several millions in annualized fee revenue, was previously shared with Citigate Cunningham.

PALO ALTO, CA: Hewlett-Packard has named The Hoffman Agency as its sole agency of record for the e-Services Solutions (ESS) group. The account, reportedly worth several millions in annualized fee revenue, was previously shared with Citigate Cunningham.

The shift ends the joint venture between the two PR firms, called Dynamic PR, which was set up especially for HP's business.

Sources hinted that high personnel turnover on the Cunningham side may have contributed to HP's decision. However, HP spokesperson Judy Radlinsky said the shift to Hoffman made sense, as she has begun beefing up her internal PR staff and didn't need a dual-agency team any longer.

'It was an experiment, and now they are going to try something different,' said Citigate Cunningham president/COO Joe Hamilton, pointing out that his agency continues to handle several other groups within the enterprise computing group, which has since been renamed the Business Customer Organization (BCO). These include the Storage group, the E-Speak operation and the Garage program.

Radlinsky refused to comment on the budget sources estimated last fall, which valued the entire enterprise computing business at between dollars 6million and dollars 9 million. However, she did confirm that the PR budget has not been downsized from last year. No matter how you slice it, it does mean a significant windfall for Hoffman, which projects worldwide fee income of dollars 12.2 million for 2000.

In November 1999, when the two agencies teamed up to pitch for the business, Dynamic PR was heralded as the first venture of its kind between Silicon Valley's biggest independents. However, much has changed on both the agency and client side, with Cunningham getting scooped up by UK-based Incepta this summer and HP assigning its corporate account of record to Applied Communications in August. Also, HP worldwide media relations director Atchison Fraser, who spearheaded the deployment of Dynamic PR last fall, left the company more than six months ago, and original plans to implement the team's strategy across the entire enterprise computing group fell through.



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