Burson plans defence and security sector push with former NATO commander

A former NATO commander is spearheading Burson-Marsteller's attempts to win more work in the defence and security sectors.

Vice-admiral Peter Hudson will continue to work at Burson into 2018
Vice-admiral Peter Hudson will continue to work at Burson into 2018

British citizen vice-admiral Peter Hudson initially joined the firm in February to work two days a month for six months, according to a UK Government document released on Wednesday.

That document says that Hudson had sought approval from the Advisory Committee on Business Appointments to take on work "to help to establish a new defence section" at the agency.

It has now been confirmed that he will continue to work for Burson beyond that initial six-month period, into 2018 at least.

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Hudson, who was head of NATO's maritime headquarter from 2013 to 2015 and had previously been the commander of EU forces in the Indian Ocean, has now confirmed that he will continue to work with Burson beyond that initial six-month stretch. He also continues to work with NATO in an advisory capacity, among other roles.

Major defence and security clients of Burson include defence contractor Raytheon and the Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition.

The firm's bid to increase that roster is led by Hudson, with other senior figures including Dennis Abbott, MD for communications at the agency in Brussels and former British Army spokesman and reservist; and two further experienced senior advisers – former Lockheed Martin senior executive Rüdiger Harisch, and Nick Williams, who has in the past worked for FleishmanHillard and the UK's Labour Party.

Abbott said: "Given the importance of security at the national and multinational level, and the increasing threat posed by cyber-attacks, Burson-Marsteller has established a new dedicated team of experts providing clients the best possible strategic counsel on these issues. Vice-Admiral Hudson is an important member of that team."

In 2016, Burson's global public affairs practice chair Kevin Bell moved across the Atlantic to become worldwide president. Read more in the firm's profile in the PRWeek Global Agency Business Report.

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