HONG KONG: Merrill Lynch Asia Pacific has chosen Ketchum over a host of suitors to serve as its agency of record in the region.
HONG KONG: Merrill Lynch Asia Pacific has chosen Ketchum over a
host of suitors to serve as its agency of record in the region.
Ketchum bested a shortlist of multinational firms, including
Burson-Marsteller and Shandwick, according to Tim Cobb, director of
marketing & communications for Merrill Lynch Asia Pacific.
’I have a small staff of four at our Hong Kong headquarters, and no one
on the ground in the other countries,’ Cobb said. ’So we’ll look to
Ketchum’s regional presence for support for our business in priority
markets such as China, Taiwan and Korea.’
Cobb said the agency’s successful handling of Charles Schwab’s Hong Kong
launch was a main factor in his decision. Ketchum, though, may have had
a slight advantage during the six-month evaluation process, as its
minority-owned office in Japan, PRAP Japan, counts Merrill Lynch Mercury
Asset Management among its clients.
Though both parties refused to disclose billings, Ketchum EVP Asia
Pacific David Jensen said, ’It’s a significant enough amount to do the
job and do it well.’
Ketchum is expected to assist with media relations, especially in
Greater China. The agency has offices in Bejing, Shanghai, Guangzhou,
Taipei and Hong Kong.
Ketchum’s role also includes strategic counseling, issue management,
employee communications and production of collateral materials.