Global round-up

NEW YORK: US PR spend will post double-digit percentage growth during the next two years, according to the Communications Industry Forecast, an annual report by merchant bank Veronis Suhler Stevenson. PR spend growth of 11.3 per cent in 2004 and 12.5 per cent in 2005 is predicted by the report, which forecasts similar growth for the advertising industry.

JAKARTA: Asia Pulp & Paper has launched a PR blitz to help rebuild its reputation, having spent the past two years battling with creditors. Ogilvy PR Worldwide is assisting the Indonesian corporation.

BUENOS AIRES: Estudio de Comunicación has launched a PR campaign to promote mineral water brand Villavicencio in Argentina. Villavicencio is backed by French food and drinks giant Danone.

BARCELONA: Spain-based tech firm Ocaima is to launch a promotional push across Spain and France. Xavier Adam PR has signed an 18-month agreement to handle the campaign, which will also include the UK, other western European countries and the US.

TAIPEI: Brodeur Worldwide has signed an affiliation agreement with Taiwanese newcomer Access Public Relations. Access PR managing director Jason Chen and Brodeur Asia-Pacific MD Terresa Christenson have brokered the tie-up.

ISTANBUL: Excel PR has signed a deal to become Hill & Knowlton’s associate PR agency in Turkey. The nine-year-old agency has 30 staff and is run by its president, founder and partner Figen Isbir.

LOS ANGELES: RL Public Relations and Marketing has launched a division to promote brands to Latino audiences via sports events. The venture is titled Sportivo.

BRUSSELS: Former Hill & Knowlton Brussels managing director Paul Baeyaert has been appointed as managing director international communications for Weber Shandwick Adamson in Brussels. Baeyaert reports to chief executive John Russell.

LOS ANGELES: Warner Brothers has hired a publicity head for its newly formed speciality film label, Warner Independent Pictures. Laura Kim has been named executive vice-president of marketing and publicity of the auto-nomous unit, which plans to release ten films per year, each with a budget of approximately £15m. Kim will join from niche agency mPRm, where she will remain until early October.

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