Privatisation PR helped one consultancy lead the way in the diminishing public sector

Privatisation PR helped one consultancy lead the way in the diminishing

public sector

If that powerhouse of privatisation Dewe Rogerson was not included in

this table, turnover from public sector PR work last year would be down

by about 12% on 1993. But that is hardly surprising: there are simply

fewer organisations that can be defined as public sector, although

demand from NHS Trusts and other quango-type bodies is bound to grow

even with a possible change of government.

It is, however, legitimate to define privatisation as part of public

sector PR, and there is little doubt Dewe Rogerson deserves its first

place: it has handled over 90% by value of the UK’s privatisation

programme, according to PR Week. This work accounts for about 20% of its

turnover, while it has also been involved in such high profile deals as

the ING takeover of failed merchant bank Barings.

Other firms which get a large chunk of revenue from what they define as

public sector work, include Westminster Communications Group and

Partnership Plus. At the former, work for clients such as NHS Trust

Federation and Durham Health Commission contributes 25% of turnover,

while the latter gets almost half of its total business from this type

of activity.

One of the characteristics of this sector is its diversity. For example,

Leedex has Avon County Council on its roster, while Leeds-based Sinclair

Mason has business from Sheffield TEC and the Brunel Housing Association

as public sector clients.

On the other hand, De Facto has capitalised on its expertise in

biotechnology, with the Department of Trade and Industry’s

‘Biotechnology means business’ campaign.

This is also an area where, by its very nature, regional agencies come

into their own. Birmingham-based David Clarke Associates continues its

work with the Black Country Development Corporation, while fellow

Brummie Harrison Cowley has Stockport Acute NHS and the Midlands

Electricity Board on its books.

Up in Liverpool, Stopforth Bright Anderson gets 40% of turnover from its

activities with Merseyside TEC and the Liverpool City Challenge, as well

as a higher education involvement through Liverpool Hope University



Top 13 public sector PR


  Consultancy                 Turnover 1995     Public sector PR

                                 (pounds)           (pounds)

1 Dewe Rogerson                 13,157,000          2,631,000

2 Shandwick UK                  36,843,000          1,842,000

3 Westminster Comms. Group       2,396,000            599,000

4 Partnership Plus                 851,000            417,000

5 Leedex Group                   2,937,000            382,000

6 Golley Slater PR               2,122,000            297,000

7 Sinclair Mason                   960,000            240,000

8 De Facto Consultants             606,000            206,000

9 David Clarke Associates          880,000            202,000

10 Stopforth Bright Anderson       503,000            201,000

11 Harrison Cowley               3,962,000            158,000

12 A Plus Group                  4,260,000            128,000

13 Systems Publicity               623,000            125,000



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