HOUSTON: Compaq, the computer giant, is evaluating its worldwide
public relations arrangements as an extension of a US review instigated
last year from its Houston headquarters.
The evaluation is likely to impact on two of Shandwick’s largest
accounts: Miller Shandwick Technologies’ account for Compaq’s US
communications, and Shandwick’s global account with Digital Equipment
Corporation, which Compaq announced it was to take over earlier this
Compaq hired management consultancy Pile and Company last year to review
its US communications needs, but the review was put on hold while the
company negotiated its takeover of Digital - which supplies networked
systems, components, software and services and whose sales for 1996
reached pounds 9 billion.
Craig Kaminer, managing director of Miller Shandwick, said: ’A number of
months ago Compaq sent out proposals to other agencies but that review
has been put on hold and hasn’t been renewed.’
Now Compaq is believed to have asked Pile to broaden its focus and
reassess its worldwide public relations requirements.
This is in light of information technology companies such as IBM and
Oracle globalising their public relations accounts into single
Earlier this year Oracle appointed Avalanche - an international network
formed by Ogilvy PR Worldwide, Hill and Knowlton and Cunningham
Communications - to handle its worldwide public relations.
Pile will have to take Compaq’s merger with Digital Equipment
Corporation into account when evaluating its worldwide PR needs.
’Outside the US, Compaq is evaluating its overall public relations
requirements but is not yet reviewing agencies,’ a source close to
Rick Hooker, a Pile consultant who is working closely with Compaq, was
unavailable for comment.
A Compaq spokeswoman refused to confirm or deny if Miller Shandwick’s
account is under review.