Gornall’s arrival comes as London-based Hanover, which was founded by John Major’s former press secretary Charles Lewington, plans to make acquisitions with a view to expand further overseas. The company said it was unable to provide more details of its expansion plans at present.
Gornall is also non-executive chairman of consumer shop Finn PR and creative content agency The Moment. His other previous roles have included CEO of Reed Exhibitions.
Hanover was ranked 29th in PRWeek’s Top 150 UK PR Consultancies table for 2016. The corporate and public affairs agency, which also has an office in Brussels, reported revenue of £8.3m, up 20 per cent on the previous year.
Lewington said of Gornall: "It is hard to think of a more experienced PR industry chairman to advise on our strategic development and help power up growth for the next five years. We are now a Top 30 PRWeek agency with revenues growing in excess of 20 per cent a year and founders will benefit from Alastair’s wisdom when thinking through the big decisions."
Gornall said: "Hanover is fast becoming the leading independent strategic communications consultancy in the UK and Europe and I am hugely excited about its potential and the chance to work with its impressive management team."
Hanover’s blue chip clients include Goldman Sachs, Sky, Microsoft, Amgen and Lucozade Ribena.