Cohn & Wolfe tech arm affected by double loss

Cohn & Wolfe's tech practice has suffered a double-blow with the loss of an interim MD and a significant client.

The agency is on the hunt for a new tech MD after Nicola Taylor's decision to move to Microsoft.

Cohn & Wolfe is also no longer working for social networking client Piczo, with rival Hotwire taking over the six-figure brief last week after a protracted pitch process.

Cohn & Wolfe has been looking for senior staff for much of the past year.

CEO Jonathan Shore exited last November, with his replacement, Freuds MD Fiona Noble, not expected to start until this summer.

The agency lost high profile accounts O2 and Starbucks last year (PRWeek, 8 February).

The agency's tech practice has also appeared to be struggling in recent months. Cohn & Wolfe's last permanent tech MD Gladys Elia resigned in August after only nine months in the role (PRWeek, 22 August 2007), to be replaced in the interim by Taylor, a former Cohn & Wolfe business technology director who moved from Hill & Knowlton's San Francisco operation. It now emerges that Taylor has moved in-house to Microsoft, as a PR manager on the corporate and citizenship team.

Last month, rival tech agency Bite won former Cohn & Wolfe tech client Interwoven. The content management company switched hands after a five-way pitch (PRWeek, 28 February). 

Cohn & Wolfe deputy MD Caroline Maddock said: 'There are half a dozen PROs remaining in the tech division at C&W. We took the decision not to re-pitch for Interwoven.'

Hotwire is now running the Piczo account, with ex-Lewis social media expert Drew Benvie in charge.

Maddock said the agency did not re-pitch for this account either and had not worked on it for months.

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