M&C Saatchi director moves to client Virgin Holidays in rejigged PR setup

Kelly Grindle (pictured) has been appointed PR lead for Virgin Holidays in a new role created following changes to its press team.

He joins from M&C Saatchi, where he had been appointed as a director last summer, before which he worked for Cake (now HSE Cake) and before that Hill+Knowlton Strategies.

Grindle will manage the Virgin Holidays press office, plan and execute integrated consumer campaigns, social media and corporate reputation issues. He will report to Sarah Coggins, vice-president, PR and social media at Virgin Atlantic, also working closely with Virgin Holidays MD Mark Anderson.

He also told PRWeek he woud look to integrate creative work from newly hired ad agency AMVBBDO, which was recruited by Virgin Holidays last week.

In August, Virgin Group's airline Virgin Atlantic merged its PR and social media team with that of Virgin Holidays. This created a team that now numbers six people including Grindle, and last month's new recruit Carly O'Donnell, international PR manager.

At M&C Saatchi, which continues to work with Virgin Holidays, Grindle had worked on the recent launch of its Wonderlist experiences, for which the agency erected a 35-foot South African treehouse on London's Southbank.

He also previously worked with Virgin Atlantic while at Cake, including launching its inaugural flight to Atlanta with a live-streamed Rudimental gig in the air. That brief, held by the agency now known as HSE Cake, is currently under review.

Anderson said: "This is an exceptionally exciting time for Virgin Holidays and particularly for PR. We’ll be relying on Kelly to highlight our excellent product offering and consumer-centric approach, while simultaneously building our corporate reputation."

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