H&K takes over Hitachi business from holding company consortium

SANTA CLARA, CA: Storage technology company Hitachi Data Systems (HDS) has selected Hill & Knowlton as its US AOR after a three-way competitive pitch, the client said Friday.

SANTA CLARA, CA: Storage technology company Hitachi Data Systems (HDS) has selected Hill & Knowlton as its US AOR after a three-way competitive pitch, the client said Friday.

A start date has not been officially set, but HDS and H&K are aiming for December 1, according to Steven Zivanic, senior director of corporate communications ?at HDS.

H&K will handle core media relations, industry analyst relations, IR support, and executive communications.? Zivanic said HDS made the change because in the past two years, H&K helped the PR operation focus on its main task: extending HDS' brand leadership position in enterprise storage, mainly in storage virtualization.

"Hill &? Knowlton was already helping us with industry analyst relations and? executive communications, and so it made sense to have one agency take? an integrated approach to the new opportunities and challenges we face, ?as we continue to grow our business in a changing market," Zivanic told PRWeek via e-mail.

In January 2005, HDS chose holding company WPP to handle its PR around the world, with Blanc & Otus leading the $2.5 million account as global AOR. The PR was previously split by region between WPP firms B&O and H&K in an attempt to streamline the company's global branding message.?

It is second time this month that a holding company-wide agency review took place. Pfizer put its Lipitor up for business in early October after previously working with consortium WPP Health Success. ? HDS and B&O declined to comment on the review, and Howard Paster, WPP EVP for PR, said Thursday he did not have any information about the review.

Hill & Knowlton teams in San Francisco, Washington, and New York will report to Mary Ann Gallo, HDS' director of global PR?.

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