News in brief

BBC: The BBC could shed up to half its comms staff as a result of plans announced yesterday by director-general Mark Thompson. BBC press officer Guy Bailey said 47 per cent of staff in the comms, marketing, human resources, finance and legal departments could face voluntary redundancy as part of its cost-cutting review.

DEPARTURE: Schroders director of corporate comms Julian Samways is leaving to be Harmonic Capital Partners head of business development.

SETTLEMENT: Yachtswoman Tracy Edwards has paid Sports Impact £5,000 in legal costs awarded to it earlier this year. The agency had already received the £30,000 fees it had been awarded and is continuing to pursue her through the courts for a further sum of more than £50,000.

CONSUMER: Talkback Thames has hired Taylor Herring PR to promote the UK version of TV show The Apprentice, fronted by Sir Alan Sugar.

B2B: Greetings-card firm Newton’s Law has hired MCC to build interest in its soft-toy licence among toy stores. The agency will position the toy as ‘the connoisseurs bear’ using celebrity endorsement and product placement.

CONSUMER: P1, the car-racing venture founded by former Formula 1 world champion Damon Hill, has hired Resonate to promote membership of the performance car club.

APPOINTMENT: Gresham PR has hired former Insurance Day editor Richard Banks. Banks quit as Insurance Day’s Americas bureau chief last month and joined Gresham as account director.

CONSUMER: Clothing retailer Republic is using Chase PR to promote store openings, regional promotions, trade features and news stories in the consumer press.

PUBLISHING BREAK: PRWeek is now taking its annual publishing break. The next issue will be out on 7 January. Merry Christmas and a happy New Year.

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