PALO ALTO, CA: Hoping to better reflect the company’s new focus under CEO Carly Fiorina, Hewlett-Packard has shifted its multi-million-dollar global corporate PR account from long-time agency of record Porter Novelli Convergence Group to Applied Communications.
PALO ALTO, CA: Hoping to better reflect the company’s new focus
under CEO Carly Fiorina, Hewlett-Packard has shifted its
multi-million-dollar global corporate PR account from long-time agency
of record Porter Novelli Convergence Group to Applied
According to HP manager of corporate communications Emily Fox, a desire
for fresh insight was the driving force behind the agency shift, rather
than any dissatisfaction with PNCG.
’We have a new CEO and a new focus on Internet services and e-business,’
Fox explained, noting that Applied has never worked on any HP business
in the past.
While Fox would not disclose whether the PNCG team was invited to
participate in the review nor name the other agencies considered, a
source close to the company cited the San Jose-based Hoffman Agency,
which shares the HP E-Services business with Cunningham Communication,
as one of the firms in the mix. However, Cunningham was reportedly not
invited to pitch.
’It’s been said that neither Cisco nor HP wanted Cunningham itself -
they wanted (former Cunningham principal) Ron Ricci, who was considered
somewhat of a superstar,’ said the source. Ricci recently left
Cunningham for Cisco.
According to Fox, however, Applied emerged a clear winner because of the
firm’s ’extensive experience with Internet business’ and its emphasis on
’We will be driving the issues in support of the ’Invent’ marketing
campaign as well as corporate issues involving the office of Carly
Fiorina,’ said Applied CEO Alan Kelly. While Kelly would not disclose a
specific dollar value for the account, he called it ’a
multimillion-dollar piece of business.’
Applied’s gain is obviously a major loss for PNCG, which has seen its
extensive relationship with HP dwindle away over the past year. Last
fall, the firm lost a big chunk of HP business when the
Hoffman/Cunningham team was awarded the E-Services account.
But according to PNCG senior partner Steve Jursa, the corporate account
was just a small slice of the agency’s total involvement with HP: ’We
continue to serve as the lead PR agency for HP’s consumer division, and
work on a number of programs on the commercial or enterprise side and
for corporate as well.’