INTERNATIONAL: Ruder Finn quits Council of PR Firms

NEW YORK: US PR agency Ruder Finn has quit the Council of PR Firms over the body’s handling of this year’s agency rankings, which have been severely affected by the Sarbanes-Oxley Act.

Ruder Finn CEO Peter Finn said the firm – which ranked second in the US league behind Edelman – was pulling its council membership in protest at ‘the unfair way’ the rankings have been compiled.

This year, the majority of holding companies with PR agencies chose not to provide 2002 revenue information, citing the Sarbanes-Oxley Act and its restrictions on releasing company figures as the reason.

But the Council still planned on including those firms in an alphabetical listing on its website at the time PRWeek went to press.

Agencies that reported figures this year will be listed with 2001 and 2002 revenue data.

Firms that did not submit numbers this year will show 2001 revenues, while 2002 data is listed as ‘not available’.

Council president Kathy Cripps described Ruder Finn’s withdrawal as ‘disappointing’ and said she hopes the agency eventually decides to rejoin the association.

Finn said on his decision: ‘If agencies that chose not to report were not included, it would encourage them to petition their parent companies for the right to do so next year.’

Citigate Dewe Rogerson parent Incepta ranked third, while Waggener Edstrom came fourth and Schwartz Communications gained fifth place.

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