China-based conglomerate Dalian Wanda Group has brought on Hill+Knowlton Strategies (H+K) as its first global communications agency of record due to the agency's "creative approach and the strength of its global network", according to a statement.
Between six to nine large international communications rivals were tipped to be vying for the business during a pitch called in April. The group has worked with PR agencies in China in the past, but this is the first time it has appointed a global AOR.
H+K will manage the group's global public relations and communications strategy, covering overall brand building as well as specific in-market projects. Last year, the agency worked on content creation and management of Wanda's global Facebook site.
Jack Martin, H+K’s global chairman and CEO, commented, "We are looking forward to partnering with Wanda Group as it leverages its incredible reputation and agility to aggressively reposition itself as one of the fastest growing international entertainment businesses."
The company’s chairman, Wang Jianlin, has been named one of Bloomberg’s 'Most Influential 50 in the World'. The Chinese multinational corporation, with a growing global footprint covering entertainment, sports, real estate, and hotel businesses, started to expand, aggressively as Martin described, overseas in 2012. It faced adversity recently as Chinese authorities blocked loans meant to finance what the government termed "reckless" overseas investments.
This article first appeared in PRWeek sister title Campaign