British Gas is looking to fill what could easily be described as one of
the most explosive seats in public relations: head of corporate media
Neil Hayes who has held the job for the past three years, reporting to
corporate affairs director Peter Sanguinetti, has moved to the role of
head of international public affairs. The job has been handled by
Michael Pickering who retires at Christmas.
Sanguinetti said Hayes had moved jobs at the beginning of September and
re-located to British Gas’ overseas operations office in Reading. He
will manage a team of ten, reporting to Sanguinetti.
The company has briefed a firm of headhunters to find suitable
candidates for the media job which is likely to carry a salary of around
pounds 80,000. The search is thought to have been underway for several
The successful candidate will join three other communications heads
under Sanguinetti. These are responsible for investor relations, public
affairs, and communications strategy, a new job created in August and
filled by David Millar (PR Week 1 September).
Sanguinetti said other changes at British Gas’ corporate affairs centre
had seen numbers reduced from 33 to 23 since the beginning of the year.
‘Various people have moved on and one or two have taken voluntary
redundancy,’ he said.
However, given that Hayes’ international department of ten will now come
under Sanguinetti, that number goes back up to 33.