NEW YORK: Vorhaus & Company is a two-office firm with 28 staffers and 1999 fee income of dollars 2.7 million - placing it 131st in PRWeek’s agency rankings. But to hear founder Robbie Vorhaus tell it, the firm was on the brink of becoming a major global player a few weeks ago.
NEW YORK: Vorhaus & Company is a two-office firm with 28 staffers
and 1999 fee income of dollars 2.7 million - placing it 131st in
PRWeek’s agency rankings. But to hear founder Robbie Vorhaus tell it,
the firm was on the brink of becoming a major global player a few weeks
Vorhaus said last week that he turned down an offer which would have
placed him atop a new entity majority-owned by Edelman. He claims to
have been offered a deal that would have given him control over Edelman
hi-tech brand PR21 (which is currently without a CEO) as well as the
overseas offices recently acquired from Rowland.
’What he (Edelman president and CEO Richard Edelman) wanted to do was
take PR21 and Rowland International and combine them with Vorhaus to
create a new company with dollars 24 million in billings,’ Vorhaus said.
But he declined the deal: ’It wasn’t the right time for us. We have
worked very hard at building our own brand. I’m flattered he considered
Edelman, however, disputed Vorhaus’ claims, saying that Vorhaus was only
one of 30 people he talked with about running PR21. Edelman also denied
ever having discussed abandoning the PR21 brand name.
While Vorhaus said the alleged deal foundered over his refusal to give
up majority control of the firm to Edelman, Richard Edelman scoffs at
the claim that negotiations even advanced that far. ’It was one lunch,’
he said. ’It never got to the point where we discussed points of
negotiation on fees or size.’
Edelman confirmed that he is looking to build PR21 - which recorded fee
income of dollars 7 million in 1999, according to PRWeek’s agency
rankings - into a major brand that would complement the main Edelman
brand. ’I need someone with more of a technology background to lead it,’
Vorhaus clients include Domino’s Pizza, GM and Heinz.