AkzoNobel and Mischief part company as Dulux owner hires new UK agency

Global paint company AkzoNobel has hired Manchester-based agency Democracy to handle its UK trade and consumer PR, replacing Mischief.

The Dulux and Cuprinol manufacturer appointed Democracy after a competitive pitch.

Democracy, which is headquartered in Manchester and also has a London office, was founded in 2008 by Jennifer O’Grady, previously of PR agencies Mason Williams and Brazen PR.

Mischief was appointed by AkzoNobel in 2011 to a brief covering consumer PR for four of its brands. Last year the agency won a PRWeek Award for its Room With Their View campaign for Dulux.

Netherlands-based AkzoNobel generated revenue of €14.6bn in 2017, with 35,700 employees across more than 150 countries. The firm has had a challenging few months, recently reporting a 10 per cent fall in net profit in Q2 2018 as it highlighted the impact of price rises on raw materials.

AkzoNobel UK & Ireland marketing director Kathryn Ledson said: "We were looking for a forward-thinking PR agency that could support our brands across the UK decorative business. Until now, we have been working with multiple partners who have been channel specific. This development will allow us to talk with a single voice. Democracy clearly demonstrated that they understood this, showed where they could amplify our expertise and support us in reaching our core trade and consumer audiences.

"There are many exciting innovations and initiatives happening across the business and we are confident in Democracy’s strategic approach and expertise in storytelling to get the right news to the right people at the right time."

Mischief CEO Frankie Cory said: "We have had an incredible five years delivering award-winning work for AkzoNobel. Their focus has changed and we wish them continued success."

AkzoNobel awarded a global communications contract to MSLGroup in the first half of 2017 following a review of its agency roster that aimed to reduce the number of consultancies on its books.

New business consultancy Ingenuity helped the client with agency selection.

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