T-Mobile hunts chief as Devereux departs

T-Mobile's UK PR chief Elaine Devereux is quitting the German mobile operator after five years.

Devereux, who is UK PR director and VP marketing and product PR, will leave at the end of June without a job to go to, as T-Mobile relocates its UK comms operations from Hammersmith, London to Hatfield in Hertfordshire.

Devereux joined T-Mobile in 2000 from Motorola, where she was EMEA brand manager. She said her international duties as VP marketing and product PR had decreased since replacing Neil Lovell as T-Mobile's top UK PRO in August 2003.

The firm is now hunting a head of PR focused on the UK market.

Devereux, who reports to UK MD Brian McBride, had worked alongside Citigate Dewe Rogerson director Tony Carlisle, who has been retained as a strategic comms advisor by German-based CEO Rene Obermann.

A source familiar with T-Mobile's comms operations said T-Mobile's top PR role in the UK had declined in significance, as PR activity to support initiatives such as the introduction of 3G services is being driven out of its headquarters in Germany.

The source said Carlisle is now responsible for much of the strategic comms advice.

Infrastructure and new product development decisions were moved out of the UK in July 2003. The source said the firm has scaled down its PR operations in the UK by not replacing departing staff such as Lovell, now comms chief at the RAC, and head of external comms Patrick Barrow, now director-general of the PRCA.

But Devereux said staff numbers would be maintained, with her replacement heading up a UK comms team of ten, including a team of five on community liaison.

The recruitment comes despite T-Mobile's stated intention to make 800 redundancies by the end of 2006.

Brands2Life is retained for product PR in the UK.

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