John Menzies hires CDR in financial adviser role

John Menzies, the UK’s largest newspaper distributor, has dropped Cardew Chancery and appointed Citigate Dewe Rogerson as its retained financial PR adviser following senior-level executive changes.

CDR took over the account last week following a competitive pitch involving Cardew and two other firms. The switch ends John Menzies’s two-and-a-half-year relationship with Cardew.

John Menzies head of investor relations John Geddes said he wanted CDR’s handling of the financial media to run alongside the firm’s IR programme. ‘The challenge is to maintain our profile with the City. The average person associates us with shops, but since we no longer have any, we need to keep the City informed of our strategic change of direction,’ he said.

The appointment follows a shake-up of the John Menzies board of directors in anticipation of the retirement of CEO Peter Smith. Smith was replaced by Patrick Macdonald last year.

In March, John Menzies reported an 82 per cent drop in full-year profits due to £17.2m of exceptional costs at Menzies World Cargo and an increase to pension costs.

In 2000, John Menzies sold its 232 newsagents and 140 shops to WH Smith for £68m. In addition to newspaper distribution, the firm also provides baggage handling and cargo loading services to airlines.

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