General election hits Bell Pottinger profit margins

Sir Tim Bell’s corporate PR and public affairs companies suffered a drop in business around the time of the general election in May last year, according to annual results released this week by their parent company Chime Communications.

Sir Tim Bell’s corporate PR and public affairs companies suffered a

drop in business around the time of the general election in May last

year, according to annual results released this week by their parent

company Chime Communications.



Profit margin levels and revenue per employee in Bell Pottinger

Consultants and Bell Pottinger Public Affairs were affected by the drop

in business.



As a consequence, margins at the group are slightly down, from 13.5 per

cent in 1996 to 13 per cent in 1997.



Bell said: ’If you go back and look at other general elections this is a

trend. Corporate activity falls off because companies like to know what

field they are operating in.’



Following the acquisition last autumn of advertising company HHCL, Chime

Communications boosted its income for 1997 by over 25 per cent to pounds

28.3 million. Chime expects its margins to increase in 1998 due to

HHCL’s higher margin.



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