BT’s corporate relations department looks likely to survive without
major cuts following BT’s takeover of US firm MCI.
David Orr, BT corporate press officer, said the companies, which are
merging to form Concert, may find ways to ‘work together and share
resources.’ But he added that, because both companies were retaining
their existing brands and headquarters, as well as creating joint
Concert head offices in Washington and London, wide-scale communications
job losses were unlikely.
BT’s corporate relations department, which covers press, PR, internal
communications, corporate and regulatory affairs and consumer relations,
currently numbers 260, with two thirds of the staff based in London.
Orr also said the companies top two communications jobs: BT’s corporate
relations director post, held by Ian Ash, and MCI vice president, PR,
under Jonelle Birney, would almost certainly both be retained.
He also anticipated that Concert would replicate BT’s current agency
arrangement, whereby it runs media relations in-house while using a
roster of shops for product and services PR.
BT’s financial PR support during the takeover activity, was provided by
the Maitland Consultancy.
The Concert deal, which is dependent on clearance from regulatory
authorities on both sides of the Atlantic, will create a telecoms giant
with annual revenues of over pounds 25 billion.