Motorola's comms guru Bignell quits to go solo

Motorola's UK comms and public affairs manager is quitting the mobile phone company to set up his own consultancy.

Chris Bignell leaves today (Friday) after just over a year at the world's second biggest handset maker. He will begin his agency with a few technology clients, but the agency itself will be generalist.

The UK comms and public affairs manager position is effectively Motorola's UK num­ber two comms role, reporting to EMEA director of comms and public policy Mark Durrant. Durrant confirmed he would ‘take over total responsibility for the UK while Motorola decides how or if to replace Chris'.

Motorola poached Big­nell last year from Toshiba Mobile, where he was UK PR and ad manager (PRWeek, 10 February 2006).

At Motorola, Bignell has concentrated on consolidating agency ­relationships across the UK and Ireland.

Bignell oversaw the hotly contested tender for Motor­ola's £300,000-a-year UK consumer and corporate ­account, which saw Firefly Communications' eight-year reign come to an end. The four-way pitch was eventually picked up by Edelman and Jackie Cooper PR (PRWeek, 22 July 2006).

This month Motorola reported a loss for the first quarter and issued a disappointing forecast for the second. The company attributed the loss partly to slowing sales and price-cutting on some phones.

The company posted a first-quarter loss of £90m, compared with profit a year earlier of £342m. Revenue fell nearly two per cent to £4.7 billion from £4.8bn.

Motorola backed the Red Aids charity campaign with Red handsets.

The campaign came under a scathing attack this year as US media title Adver­tising Age accused it of spending £50m on mar­keting while only giving £9m to good causes.

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