Richards (pictured), who has worked for Labour leaders Gordon Brown, Ed Miliband and Jeremy Corbyn over more than a decade, joins Edelman’s public affairs team. The agency said she "will be charged with developing an enhanced client offer in the Labour policy and communications space".
"Richards will head up a core team of ex-Labour advisors offering clients insight and understanding of Corbyn’s policy objectives and his party’s approach to business," said Edelman.
She is the latest prominent advisor to one of the main UK political parties to join Edelman, the UK’s biggest PR agency. She will report to public affairs and government relations MD Will Walden, formerly Boris Johnson’s comms director who moved to Edelman in January 2017.
Richards will also work with senior directors Craig Woodhouse, former press secretary to Prime Minister Theresa May; James Morris, ex-Labour party senior strategist; and Lucy Thomas, former deputy director of Britain Stronger in Europe.
Walden said: "Labour’s improved showing in last year’s snap general election, coupled with continued uncertainty over Brexit, mean clients are increasingly interested in what a potential future Labour administration might mean for their business. It’s vital that our current and future clients understand how Labour views business, and Emily was the standout candidate in this space. Her appointment gives clients immediate insight, and will help them to drive engagement with Labour policy makers whilst navigating Labour’s policy objectives."
Richards said: "At a time of such significant political change and uncertainty the need for business to understand and engage with the policies of all parties is more important than ever. At this challenging time, comprehensive insight into the possible future policy landscape is vital. After over a decade working in Labour politics I’m looking forward to using my experience to help businesses develop their understanding and relationships with the Labour Party, and to support Edelman’s wide range of stakeholders to engage with Labour policy-makers."