Agencies get new-media warning

PR firms need to be ‘sharper’ in their use of new-media platforms if they are to see off the threat of rapidly expanding integrated marcoms agencies.

The claim by Ingrid Silver, partner at corporate law firm Denton Wilde Sapte, follows predictions of another year of cross-sector media mergers and acquisitions.

In a survey of 50 media bosses, nearly two thirds expected a further blurring of sector divisions in 2006. Meanwhile, 94 per cent expected the rate of consolidation to increase or stay the same in the next 12 months.

'Multimedia platforms can detract from traditional PR outlets because they offer an easier route to the consumer,' said Silver. 'PR has to be smarter and understand what these platforms offer.'

David Ascott, partner at accountant Grant Thornton – which commissioned the Mergermarket poll with Denton – said: 'The market could polarise between multi-faceted media groups and smaller specialists led by well-known figures.'

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