Hering Schuppener founder and global financial PR luminary Ralf Hering dies

Ralf Hering, founder of German financial PR agency Hering Schuppener, has died at the age of 61, with industry figureheads including Roland Rudd paying tribute to the man and his legacy.

Ralf Hering: the founder and CEO of Hering Schuppener has died at the age of 61
Ralf Hering: the founder and CEO of Hering Schuppener has died at the age of 61

Hering died suddenly on February 16 of heart failure, leaving colleagues at his agency "shocked and terribly saddened".

PR luminaries including Finsbury founder Rudd — with whom Hering had a close working relationship — have paid tribute.

Rudd took to Twitter to describe Hering as a "unique storyteller with a superb sense of timing".

Hering was the founder, principal partner and chief executive of the Hering Schuppener Group, which is now owned by WPP.

He leaves a strong legacy — Hering Schuppener is a big hitter in the world of financial communications, handling many of the globe's biggest M&A deals. It scored third place (as Finsbury Hering Schuppener GPG) in media analysis firm Mergermarket's ranking of agencies by value and volume of deals handled in 2017.

This performance was thanks to its global reach, a result of a 2016 global partnership with UK agency Finsbury and a 2017 deal with US public affairs specialist Glover Park Group.

The German agency also featured 40th in PRWeek's Agency Business Report 2017, based on its 2016 global revenue of $49.6m.

Journalist Arun Sudhaman called Hering a "giant of the German PR world".

As well as steering his eponymous agency, Hering was also a published author, having written German language books, including Leadership statt Management: Führung durch Kommunikation (which roughly translates as "Leadership instead of management through communication").

In a post on its website, the agency mourned Hering's passing: "Ralf Hering gave the group its character and set of values. For all of us, his passing is a huge loss. Our thoughts are with Ralf’s family and our condolences go out to his wife and three children.

"For all our sadness and grief, he would have wanted us to be there for our clients also during this difficult time and support them with the quality and dependability, which they have come to expect. Thanks to Ralf Hering’s entrepreneurial vision, Hering Schuppener has a strong and broad-based management team that will guarantee stability and continuity."

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