New chief to lead Expedia PR review

Expedia is to undertake a root-and-branch review of its PR following this week's arrival of former Kellogg's Europe PR chief Chris Wermann in the newly created role of EMEA director of comms.

Wermann, who reports to EMEA president Simon Breakwell, is reviewing the internet travel company's PR needs throughout the region as it looks to strengthen its international profile.

Wermann said the two to three-month review would take a 'mix and match approach' to procuring PR services from local agencies and international networks with local capabilities. Expedia currently uses The Red Consultancy for consumer PR in the UK plus various agencies in other territories.

'We are well established in the UK and western Europe, but need to build our business in eastern Europe, Russia, the Middle East and Africa,' said Wermann.

During his year at Kellogg's, Wermann ended Hill & Knowlton's 40-year reign on the cereal giant's PR account, bringing in Munro & Forster. Expedia faces competition from bigger online rivals, US-based Orbitz and Travelocity, which bought for £557m last month.

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