Compaq, the largest global supplier of personal computers, is
strengthening its PR team in Europe and the US following its merger with
fellow computer company Digital.
In Europe, Compaq has appointed its first PR chief, Virginia Cartwright,
to oversee an expanded team, completed last week with the arrival of PR
manager Simon Jones.
Compaq merged with Digital last year and computer company Tandem in
Following the Digital merger, its number of staff in Europe has risen
from 6,000 to 22,000.
’Having integrated three brands, it’s important as we move forward that
we position the company correctly. PR is probably the tool in the
marketing mix most needed to do that,’ said Cartwright.
In the US, the company is looking to recruit a global PR chief at
vice-president level. Compaq’s current head of communications in the US
is PR director Jim Finlaw, who reports to senior vice president for
sales and marketing Enrico Pesatori. Finlaw’s post will continue to
exist, but the PR vice president will oversee his work and report to
Between them, Compaq and Digital retained four people working in PR and
relations with technology industry analysts. However, Compaq had no PR
chief. Communications was the responsibility of Gabriele Zedlmayer,
marketing communications director for Europe, the Middle East and Africa
Two members of the teams left after the merger, including Digital PR
manager Alan Brighty, who has moved to Shandwick in Geneva.
Cartwright joined Compaq last month from data storage and cash machine
manufacturer NCR, where she was corporate marketing head worldwide and
corporate affairs head for EMEA.
She and most of her five-strong team are based in Munich, although much
of their work will will be with London analysts. Cartwright reports to
Zedlmayer. Together, these regions represent 40 per cent of Compaq’s