NEW YORK: Andrew Merrill is leaving his post as head of Edelman's financial communications practice to open the first US office of Finsbury, the UK-based financial PR powerhouse.
Finsbury senior partner Roland Rudd said the move into the US was spurred by demand from existing multinational clients. He also perceives this as an opportunity to gain clients in the hedge fund and private equity sectors, which have been doing well.
Merrill assumed the US CEO post on June 1. He'll be tasked with everything from hiring staff to drumming up new business.
"We're the leading boutique in the UK and Europe," he said. "In today's global business environment, to not have a platform in the US is a significant hole."
He added, "This is something Martin Sorrell and [Finsbury parent company] WPP have wanted to do for some time."
With a greater global presence, Finsbury will now be better positioned to compete with global financial shops like Brunswick Group and Financial Dynamics.
Edelman has not yet named Merrill's replacement.