Casio hands Firefly task of losing ‘1980s image’

Consumer electronics company Casio Electronics has centralised its PR function in a bid to revamp the image of the Casio brand.

It has appointed Firefly Communications as sole PR agency for Casio across five product areas, ending Joe Public Relations’s remit on two of the accounts.

Firefly is handling UK PR for Casio’s watches – excluding the G-Shock brand – cameras, musical instruments, TVs and calculators.

The changes do not affect Casio’s relationship with Slice PR, which was brought onboard to handle PR for G-Shock in 2002 (PRWeek, 2 August 2002). But the review does mark the end of the company’s relationship with Joe Public regarding the agency’s work for non-G-Shock watches and camera products.

Joe Public has handled PR for Casio cameras for the last 18 months (PRWeek, 9 August 2002).

Firefly associate director Robin Wilson is leading the account and reports to Casio head of strategic planning Roger Ayers.

Ayers said the moves were motivated by a need to shed Casio’s ‘1980s image’ and would probably include the appointment of a new director of communications next year.

‘The company has failed to invest consistently in [the Casio brand], so now people [mainly] recognise Casio for its historic digital watches and calculators. We want to build the brand equity through a more consistent PR effort,’ he said.

Ayers added that the PR effort to rejuvenate the Casio name would include a more proactive approach, with senior executives making themselves more readily available to speak on behalf of the company.

It is understood that Firefly pitched against rivals August.One Communications, Exposure Comms, Infoplan International and Launch PR to secure the business.

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