In brief: New role for Edelman veteran Brain, Brands2Life's £1k staff loans, senior Guardian journalist joins Brunswick

David Brain's new non-executive director role, Brands2Life offers "life stages" loans to employees, newspaper veteran Dan Roberts joins Brunswick, and more from PRWeek UK.

Edelman veteran David Brain joins Enero

Enero Group, the holding company that owns Hotwire and Frank, has appointed Edelman veteran David Brain - who left the agency last year - as an independent non-executive director. Brain (pictured above), whose new role begins on 10 May, has been CEO of Edelman’s EMEA and also Asia Pacific Middle East & Africa regions during a 13-year career at the agency. He was most recently a director of the group supervisory board at Edelman, and a member of its global management board. Enero Group chairman John Porter said: "David’s network and thought leadership will be invaluable to all our businesses."

Brands2Life offers £1k loans to staff

Brands2Life has introduced a "life stages" loan for staff of up to £1,000 per year to help employees who need to make a significant financial outlay. The scheme will help junior staff fund the rental deposit for accommodation in London, Brands2Life said. Staff can also use the loan – which is part of the you@brands2life benefits package - for an educational course; a sports or arts season ticket or membership of a club or a gym; or technology at home such as a laptop or TV, the agency added. Giles Fraser, Brands2Life co-founder, said: "The cost of living in London grows ever higher so this scheme should make it a little easier for Brands2Life staff especially those looking to fund somewhere to live for the first time. And, if renting isn’t an issue for someone, then we want them to be able to afford something else that enhances the quality of their life."

Newspaper veteran Dan Roberts joins Brunswick

Brunswick has hired Dan Roberts, a senior national newspaper veteran of 25 years, as a partner in the London office. He joins from The Guardian where he was Brexit policy editor and previously Washington Bureau chief, national editor and business editor. Roberts was formerly city editor and later deputy editor at The Sunday Telegraph and held several positions at the FT. Brunswick CEO Neal Wolin said: "He brings with him senior media experience and a range of expertise and understanding across business, finance and politics. He will be of huge value to our clients in the UK, US and elsewhere."

Bella Italia hires Launch PR

Italian dining brand Bella Italia has appointed PR agency Launch to spearhead the consumer announcement of its new menu and also oversee a "brand reappraisal programme". The new menu includes gluten free, vegan and lower calorie options, a new range of seafood dishes and ‘golden tomatoes’. The agency said it will undertake a "creative, integrated programme of media and influencer education and trial".

Fox PR wins Fairmont resort account in Maldives

Fairmont Maldives Sirru Fen Fushi, a luxury resort in the Maldives, has hired London-based luxury communications agency Fox PR to handle comms for the UK, USA and Canada. Fox PR has been tasked to launch the resort this month and next month’s installation of the country’s first underwater sculpture museum. The Fairmont hotel portfolio also includes The Plaza in New York, The Savoy in London, and Fairmont Le Château Frontenac in Québec City.

Holiday home win for Smoking Gun

Holiday home and lodge manufacturer Willerby has hired communications agency Smoking Gun to two new briefs after initially appointing it to handle PR last summer. The agency will now also manage Willerby’s social media marketing activity and has also won the combined PR and social media brief for the firm’s latest venture, a new lifestyle brand called ‘Park Homes by Willerby’.

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