2005 Global Profile: Hill & Knowlton

CEO

Paul Taaffe

Headquarters location

New York

Total US staff

Not supplied.

Total non-US staff

Not supplied.

Worldwide office locations

  • Wholly-owned: Amman, Amsterdam, Aschaffenburg, Athens, Atlanta, Austin, Bangkok, Barcelona, Beijing, Berlin, Boston, Brussels, Budapest, Buenos Aires, Cairo, Calgary, Chicago, Copenhagen, Doha, Dubai, Dublin, Edmonton, Frankfurt, Guatemala City, Helsinki, Hong Kong, Houston, Irvine, Jeddah, Kuala Lumpur, Lisbon, London, Los Angeles, Madrid, Manama, Mexico City, Miami, Milan, Montevideo, Montreal, Munich, New York, Oslo, Ottawa, Paris, Pittsburgh, Portland, Quebec City, Riga, Riyadh, Rome, Sacramento, San Francisco, San Juan, Santiago, S?o Paulo, Seattle, Shanghai, Singapore, Spokane, Stockholm, Sydney, Tallahassee, Tallinn, Tampa, Tokyo, Toronto, Vancouver, Washington, DC, Winnipeg

    Majority-owned: Guatemala City, Moscow

    Minority-owned: Seoul, Warsaw

    Affiliate/partnership: Bogota, Bucharest, Caracas, Fredericton, Halifax, Ho Chi Minh City, Ikeja, Lagos, Istanbul, Kampala, Karachi, Kiev, Ljubljana, Nairobi, New Delhi, Prague/Blatislava, Quito, Reykjavik, Sandton, Saskatoon, Sofia, St. John's, Tel-Aviv, Vilnius, Vienna, Zug

    Proportion of the wholly- and majority-owned agencies that carry the parent's brand name

    Every city in the above listing has an H&K agency, but in addition, there is a Blanc & Otus presence in Atlanta, Austin, Boston, London, San Francisco, and Washington, DC; Penn, Schoen & Berland is in New York and Washington, DC, and Wexler Walker Public Policy Associates is in Washington, DC.

    Global structure

    Our agency is structured by region and by practice. We have key client relationship managers that deliver consistent quality and seamless client service across regions and practices. They provide counsel and direction to the client and team, and serve as the central control point on all matters relating to Hill & Knowlton's day-to-day working relationship with the client. Key client relationship managers implement client reviews on a regional or global basis as required, and help to establish metrics to ensure total client satisfaction.

    Key clients

    HP

    Regions where account is serviced, and whether the work is done by an affiliate, partner or a wholly-owned office of the firm

    We serve HP in Asia Pacific; Europe, Middle East & Africa; Latin America; and North America. Multiple offices handle the work; done largely by H&K-branded offices.

    Type of work done on the account, including practice areas involved

    Our work with HP involves all our major service practices: corporate communications, marketing communications and public affairs; and is lead out of our Technology Practice. Specialties have included analyst relations, B2B marketing, consumer technology, corporate social responsibility, crisis communications and issues management, financial communications, internal communications, interactive communications, litigation communications, media training, sports marketing and sponsorships, and youth marketing.

    Length and type of engagement

    We are in our third year of service to this client.

    Management structure of the account

    Hill & Knowlton clients always have a key client relationship manager in place to direct all aspects of the account. We structure account management according to the desired needs of the client, either by region, country, product, or business units/groups. The HP account is organized around regions.

    How account is billed

    We invoice our clients on a monthly basis.

    Size of budget

    Not supplied.

    Motorola

    Regions where account is serviced, and whether the work is done by an affiliate, partner or a wholly-owned office of the firm

    We serve Motorola in Asia Pacific; Europe, Middle East & Africa; and North America. Multiple offices in our global network handle the work; done largely by H&K-branded offices.

    Type of work done on the account, including practice areas involved

    Our work with Motorola also engages all our major service practices: corporate communications, marketing communications and public affairs. Specialties have included analyst relations, B2B marketing, consumer technology, corporate social responsibility, crisis communications and issues management, internal communications, interactive communications, litigation communications, media training, sports marketing and sponsorships, and youth marketing.

    Length and type of engagement

    Motorola has been a key client for H&K since 1993.

    Management structure of the account

    Hill & Knowlton clients always have a key client relationship manager in place to direct all aspects of the account. We structure account management according to the desired needs of the client, either by region, country, product, or business units/groups. The Motorola account is organized around business units.

    How account is billed

    We invoice our clients on a monthly basis.

    Size of budget

    Not supplied.

    Procter & Gamble

    Regions where account is serviced, and whether the work is done by an affiliate, partner or a wholly-owned office of the firm

    Currently, we handle work for P&G in Asia Pacific; Europe, Middle East & Africa; Latin America; and North America. Multiple offices in our global network handle the work; done largely by H&K-branded offices.

    Type of work done on the account, including practice areas involved

    Throughout the years, Hill & Knowlton's relationship with P&G has touched virtually every practice, including our service practices, Corporate Communications, Marketing Communications and Public Affairs; and our Health & Pharma Practice. Specialties have included analyst relations, B2B marketing, consumer technology, corporate social responsibility, crisis communications and issues management, interactive communications, internal communications, litigation communications, media training, sports marketing and sponsorships, and youth marketing.

    Length and type of engagement

    Hill & Knowlton has served Procter & Gamble at various times for more than 20 years. We are currently in our sixth straight year of service to this client.

    Management structure of the account

    Hill & Knowlton clients always have a key client relationship manager in place to direct all aspects of the account. We structure account management according to the desired needs of the client, either by region, country, product, or business units/groups. The P&G account is organized by country or region.

    How account is billed

    We invoice our clients on a monthly basis.

    Size of budget

    Not supplied.

    Global revenues change from one year ago (Global revenue is defined as revenue generated by all regions)

    Global revenues are increasing. Roughly 70% of European clients by value are multi-country engagements.

    International revenues change from one year ago (International revenue is defined as revenue generated by all regions excluding the region in which the agency is headquartered)

    International revenues also have increased at an even faster rate.

    Global staffing change from one year ago

    Not supplied.

    International staffing change from one year ago

    Not supplied.

    Performance in light of expectations and the sociopolitical factors affecting performance

    Performance exceeded expectations, with opportunities driven by factors such as the weak dollar vs. the strengthened European currency, and the rise of China.

    Business won, or lost, in the past year due to a global PR consolidation by the client

    Not supplied.

    Best-performing regions

    Our Canadian operations have been particularly strong given its marketplace share. North Asia growth has been driven by a robust economy in China and some resurgence in Japan. The Middle East is also performing well given high oil prices and population growth. The US and Europe remain fundamentally sound.

    Under-performing regions

    We have no regional issues, but some with individual countries.

    Region targeted for increased investment of resources this year

    Hill & Knowlton continues to consistently invest in all areas in various areas relative to particular regional needs to foster growth.

    Region targeted for decreased investment of resources this year

    None.

    New region/country under consideration to enter this year

    There are few new markets for Hill & Knowlton to enter given that we operate wholly-owned offices in more markets than any other PR firm. We are always considering various growth markets, and we see India as a significant opportunity.

    Consideration of international acquisitions or organic growth

    We consider both, with primary focus on organic growth.

    International pro bono activities and other ways the firm connects with the regions in which it operates

    Hill & Knowlton always has believed in the power of creative ideas to change the world, especially in advancing the important causes of our society. We undertake a number of pro bono projects across our worldwide network, with causes including the arts, education, environment and health. Organizations to which the firm provided pro bono support include Cancer Care in Canada, Liga Portuguesa Contra O Cancro (cancer charity) in Portugal, Make-a-Wish Foundation in the US, the National Breast Cancer Foundation in Australia, the Red Cross in Singapore and the US, Run for the Cure in Tokyo, the Special Olympics in New Zealand and the UK, and the like.

    Globally, we also celebrate the third anniversary of our global pro bono relationship with Ashoka, an international non-profit organization that identifies and invests in social entrepreneurs who it designates as "Ashoka Fellows" - extraordinary individuals who have demonstrated that their ideas can drive social change in their communities.

    Additionally, through efforts such as the John W. Hill Foundation, we actively participate in direct donations worldwide, to various health and disability, education, and social causes, such as the American Red Cross and the tsunami relief fund, Bide-a-Wee, Juvenile Diabetes, National Parkinson Foundation, Special Olympics, and United Way.

    We target 2-3% in pro bono work and donation of hard dollars, equating to roughly $150-200,000.

    Key changes made over the past couple of years that were driven by clients' changing needs

    We have focused particularly on three areas:

    Insight. As clients continue to demand more depth of understanding on the implications of world events and trends on their business and communications strategies, we have invested significantly in our insights capabilities around the world. We have strengthened our proposals and campaigns with increasingly better insights into not only trend and event impact, but also particularly, audience segmentation, whether they are corporate, consumer, or public affairs programs.

    Planning. While we have always had a substantial suite of tools for the various account planning needs, we have endeavored to expand upon these further, especially in servicing our major multi-office accounts.

    Measurement. Clients will always need to assess the success of their communications campaigns. We have focused on not only measurement tools that aid evaluation of communication output, but particularly on those that show the real impact of actions and communications on business results.

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