INTERNATIONAL: Top comms job is axed as HSBC repositions PA offer

HONG KONG: HSBC has axed the global head of marketing and communications for its standalone marcoms, investment banking and markets arm in an attempt to cut costs.

Anna Lenaghan, who joined HSBC Investment Bank in 1998, has lost her job alongside marketing manager Florence Yee, whose brief within the department included editing and production duties.

The redundancies see the seven-strong department reduced to a headcount of five, as the department itself undergoes a rebrand to greater reflect the proportion of work allocated to public affairs.

The department will now be known as public affairs, investment banking and markets, Asia-Pacific. It will work independently from HSBC's larger, group public affairs arm with a regional brief run out of HK.

Pierre Goad, who was previously head of media relations for the division and whose role now changes to head of public affairs, investment banking and markets, Asia-Pacific, said: 'We are reorganising the department to better reflect the work that we are doing and, obviously, with a view to the economic climate.

'It would be fair to say that, like most other corporations in Hong Kong and the region, we are trying to do more with less,' he said, although he refused to comment on the specifics surrounding the redundancies.

According to Goad, internally the department's new moniker would communicate its professional remit more effectively, while less time would be spent on 'classical marketing' and more on external relations, events and other outward facing direct contact with the media.

Former Dow Jones financial journalist Goad was hired last August at the time when HSBC planned to boost its PR capabilities to deal with the increasing media interest (PRWeek, 10 August 2001).

In the same month, the bank also named Agustina Ocampo head of industrial relations and public affairs in Argentina, replacing Monica Perez Ariad (PRWeek, 31 August 2001).

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