The number-two selling lager in the UK was bought by Scottish & Newcastle in April for £309m. The brewer is keen to recoup the outlay by increasing sales and diversifying into premium markets.
Neither S&N nor Freud would comment on the deal, which PRWeek understands will be finalised by the end of the month.
Cairns took the brief from Jackie Cooper PR early in 2005 (PRWeek, 25 Feb 2005) after a conflict of interest at JCPR parent Edelman.
SEPARATELY... Freuds chairman Matthew Freud is to ‘withdraw continued financing' from journalism trade magazine Press Gazette 16 months after he became its majority shareholder, prompting a likely sale, writes Hannah Marriott.
Vice-chairman Kris Thykier said Freud regretted having to make the decision, adding: ‘Matthew made it clear that he had nothing to do with the editorial content, but perhaps we underestimated the view from some newspapers that PR and journalism should be kept separate.'