HSBC bids for greater 'visibility' in comms

HSBC has brought in Maitland in the midst of a six-month root-and-branch review of its comms strategy.

As revealed on on Wednesday, the City agency emerged triumphant from a competitive pitch to secure its prestigious UK financial comms account.

HSBC has been criticised for its ‘introverted’ approach and was the only FTSE UK bank to see its shares fall last year.

In response to the perceived lack of media, stakeholder and public engagement, group comms director Richard Beck – recently promoted to replace Michael Broadbent who retired last year – has led the six-month comms assessment.

‘CEO Mike Geoghegan and group chairman Stephen Green have accepted and bought into the fact more visibility is needed,’ said Beck.

City agency Maitland – run by founder Angus Maitland who will personally lead the account – will be retained on UK financial comms. Maitland or Financial Dyna­mics, which was also considered for the brief, could also be used for work in HSBC’s 80 other operating countries in the future.

Beck said HSBC would also ‘engage more actively’ in public policy.

‘Internationally government and media are increasingly asking for a perspective on subjects we have avoided for sensitivity reasons in the past,’ he argued.

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