Apple Computer, the beleaguered US computer maker, is to review the
whole of its Europcan public relations.
The company which virtually launched the personal computer revolution in
the early 1980s, has faced a string of woes since it revealed losses of
dollars 69 million (pounds 45 million) for the last quarter and
announced plans to axe 1,300 jobs in December.
Merger talks with Sun Microsystems collapsed at the end of January,
while president and chief executive Michael Spindler was replaced by
Gilbert Amelio earlier this month - shortly after taking out full page
newspaper advertisements announcing Apple’s imminent revival.
European corporate relations manager Jean-Pierre Le Calvez confirmed
that Apple was reviewing its PR strategy and examining the possibility
of replacing incumbent agen cies with a single pan-Euro pean adviser.
He revealed that four or five consultancies had so far beer identified
as possible candi dates, but added that the com pany might also consider
using a network or reorganising the work of existing agencies.
‘It’s a reflection process right now,’ said Le Calvez. ‘We have looked
around at agencies but no decision has been taken and we have not met
any of them yet. We are in the very early stages of the review.’ He
added that a decision on what approach to takewould be made-by the end
Apple retains three agencies in Europe for corporate and product PR:
Bite in the UK: Essential Media in Germany; and Self Image in France.
Apple Europe, the company s corporate umbrella based in Paris, also uses
French firms Gecko and MDP for press relations and financial work. Worth
pounds 250,000 in annual fees. Apple is Bite’s biggest account. Managing
director Matthew Ravden expressed surprise at the review hut was
confident that Apple would remain a Bite client.
Losing it would clearly be a blow, but we have no reason to understand
that will happen’ he said. ‘I don’t feel threatened at the moment and I
think we are in a very strong position.’