Marketing Featured Southeast Asia

TEAM LEWIS tapped as Circles.Life’s agency of record for integrated communications in Singapore

Singapore – Circles.Life, Singapore’s fully digital telco, has appointed global marketing agency, TEAM LEWIS, as its agency partner for public relations and influencer engagement.

Taking effect last April 2023, TEAM LEWIS will support Circles.Life in conceptualising, developing, and implementing PR strategies and activities in Singapore. In addition to providing consultancy services, the agency will also be responsible for the creation of relevant and impactful mainstream, online and social media coverage for Circles.Life to further bolster the positioning and messaging the brand has to offer.

The fully digital telco company continues to be a key player in disrupting the traditional notions of a telco service provider, with offerings such as unlimited data, rollover data, and its new travel plan, JetPac, allowing users to roam anytime, anywhere with added features such as airport lounge access.

One of the founders of Circles.Life, Rameez Ansar, commented on the appointment, “As the fourth largest telco in Singapore, we are constantly revolutionising our digital service experience, while continuously reinventing ourselves to stay relevant for our ever-changing customers’ needs. TEAM LEWIS has demonstrated an understanding of the brand and provided a strategic direction in line with our brand messaging.” 

Pamela Tor Das, managing director of TEAM LEWIS Singapore, said, “Circles.Life is known for its making innovative and bold moves that have made waves across Singapore’s telco industry. We are thrilled to be its partner of choice for integrated communications in Singapore and can’t wait to showcase what else the brand has to offer.” 

The appointment followed a competitive pitch for the account last December, with the appointment being finalised in March 2023.

Marketing Featured South Asia

Redhill inks strategic partnerships with PR Wire, Aroca Consulting Group

Singapore – The Singapore-headquartered integrated global communications agency, Redhill, has entered strategic partnerships with PR Wire, a public relations consultancy in Sri Lanka, and Aroca Consulting Group (ACG), a full-service public affairs and business advisory firm from Singapore.

According to the release, these collaborations will enable Redhill to strengthen its market presence and capabilities in Sri Lanka, as well as broaden its offerings in government relations and public affairs. On the other hand, both PR Wire and ACG will gain access to Redhill’s extensive portfolio of communications and storytelling services, along with international expertise and reach from its global network.

“Expanding and strengthening our market presence and service offerings have always been a priority for Redhill, and we are excited to be partnering with PR Wire and ACG. Sri Lanka has always been an important market for Redhill, especially as our Studio team is on the ground there,” said Jacob Puthenparambil, CEO at Redhill.

He added, “Similarly, with our existing relationships within the government sector, it is a natural next step to deepen our expertise in public affairs and policy. Through our partnerships with PR Wire and ACG, who are both leaders in their respective sectors and markets, we are confident to deliver broader, more dynamic services to our collective clients.”

Meanwhile, Ashan Kumar, founder and managing director at PR Wire said that the partnership with Redhill will create opportunities across various markets in the Asia-Pacific to serve clients with a fully integrated communication strategy, focusing on traditional and digital public relations.

“Together, we can solidify our service offerings through a strong global footprint within Singapore, Sri Lanka, and other APAC offices. It is increasingly important to have a globalised approach to PR and communications while maintaining on-ground, local intelligence including buyer behaviour, business and communication strategy and strong media landscape expertise with an authentic network. This partnership offers exactly that, and we are excited to hit the ground running with Redhill,” Kumar added.

Ozan Ibrisim, managing director for Singapore at Aroca Consulting Group, also shared his excitement over the partnership as it will diversify ACG’s service offerings through Redhill’s integrated communications approach and its specialisation in public affairs and government relations.

“Through our collaboration, we look forward to providing clients with the most effective combination of strategies to build a strong social, economic and sustainability case for them to achieve their business objectives. Public affairs and government relations have evolved to require a more collaborative approach with integrated communications, and we are excited to strengthen our capabilities to provide the best service to clients,” he said.

Previously, Redhill has also entered a partnership with Geylang International Football Club (GIFC) to drive women’s football in Singapore.

Marketing Featured Global

Global PR network PRBI to gather industry professionals in Milan to tackle pertinent issues in PR, comms this May

Amsterdam, Netherlands – Global PR network Public Relations Boutiques International (PRBI) will be gathering its member agencies and industry professionals in Milan for its Annual General Meeting from 3 to 6 May 2023. Member agencies of the network to grace the said industry event will be coming from the markets of North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, South America, and Australia. 

PRBI, which was founded in 2008, boasts a global network of more than 35 independent public relations firms. The principals of each agency are experienced practitioners who have held senior positions in large public relations agencies and/or corporations and now provide hands-on service working directly with clients. 

According to PRBI, the General Meeting for this year will be used as a platform for strategic planning discussions, networking, best practice sharing, and giving the stage to guest speakers who will address issues impacting the communications industry. 

“PRBI’s annual general meeting is a forum where experienced public relations agency principals engage in an energizing exchange of ideas and create stronger relationships among peers,” said Juris Petersons, PRBI president and founder of PR consultancy JazzComm, located in Riga, Latvia. 

Amongst the topics the organisation will take on is the presence of disinformation amongst businesses globally today. Speaking on this subject is Janis Rungulis, an expert in developing awareness-raising campaigns to strengthen societal resilience and respond better to disinformation attacks in the EU and Eastern Neighborhood countries.

One of the leader attendees, Tarunjeet Rattan, managing partner of India-based Nucleus PR, commented, “The PRBI annual meets are a treasure trove [of] knowledge that enable independent boutique agencies get an edge and stay ahead of the curve. I am looking forward to all the sessions. I will also be moderating the discussion on disinformation campaigns and gain an insight on how PR teams from different countries handle it on a local and global level.”

During the Annual General Meeting, Taru Nikulainen of the Finish agency Brunnen Communications will be delivering an update on the PRBI Barometer, an annual survey of agency owners across the globe to help determine what decision-makers are expecting from their agency partners thereby helping PRBI members gain a better understanding of trending PR Service needs that clients are planning to invest in. 

PRBI members that will also be speaking during the event include Serap Durak of Pozitif PR (Istanbul, Turkey) who will be discussing challenges and trends for PR in Turkey; Ester Riisapp of PR Partner (Tallinn, Estonia) to present on the risk assessment cards for clients; and David Ball of Ball Consulting Group (Boston, MA, USA) to discuss crisis communication in the modern world. 

Marketing Featured ANZ

Mango Aotearoa announces four new hires across PR team

Auckland, New Zealand – Public relations agency Mango Aotearoa has announced four new hires across its PR team namely Jo Martin as public relations account director, and account managers Braxton Dinnan, Ellen Pye and Clea Kanning.

Martin joined at the start of the year after a number of years running Brand New You, a personal branding organisation first established in Australia before setting up in New Zealand in 2020. Dinnan was also with Martin at Brand New You, and brings experience across PR, marketing and e-commerce.

Meanwhile, Pye was previously from Showroom 22 and brings her knowledge of fashion, beauty and lifestyle brands to Mango clients including Specsavers and Lion Beverages, as well as campaigns such as Correct the Internet for Team Heroine.

Lastly, Kanning, who hails from the UK, brings strong PR and social expertise, and is working with the team on Samsung, and The Warehouse Group.

Managing Director Sean Brown says Mango Aotearoa is excited to expand the team and welcome such a variety of skilled people to the agency.

“As our business continues to grow, we are pleased to bolster our offering so that we can continue to provide top end integrated marcomms work for our fantastic clients. It’s particularly pleasing that Mango continues to attract the best talent, and we are delighted to welcome our four new recruits,” Brown said.

Some of the client accounts Mango Aotearoa has handled includes Cannabis Clinic, Volkswagen New Zealand, and Bendon Lingerie.

Marketing Featured Southeast Asia

Vividthree to acquire 30% stake in PR firm Elliot Communications

Singapore Immersive media company Vividthree Holdings has announced that it has entered into a definitive conditional sale and purchase agreement (SPA) with one of the leading PR agencies in Singapore and Malaysia, Elliot Communications 

The group will invest S$775,393 in cash for new and vendor shares, acquiring a 30% stake in Elliot & Co. The SPA is expected to be completed by 30 April this year. 

The SPA also details a call option agreement with Elliot & Co., allowing the group to acquire another 21% stake for at least S$1.98m should Elliot & Co. achieve a net profit of not less than S$0.90mbetween FY2023 and FY2025, bringing the latter’s share to 51%.

With the acquisition, Elliot & Co. will help broaden Vividthree’s service portfolio and bolster value for customers. It will likewise complement Vividthree’s core business of digital content production and is in line with its ambition to expand its footprint in the communications industry. 

Moreover, the partnership will enable Vividthree to leverage Elliot Communications’ network and expertise to enter new markets and capitalise on emerging opportunities in Southeast Asia.

“Our partnership with Elliot & Co. will broaden our portfolio of services and reinforce our presence in the APAC region. With this acquisition, we are well positioned to enhance our reputation and build stronger relationships with stakeholders, which will drive value for our shareholders and enable us to better serve our clients,” said Jonathan Zhang, chief executive officer of Vividthree.

Zhang also added that the decision to partner with Elliot & Co. was based on the latter’s commitment to customer satisfaction, remarkable growth trajectory, and shared values.

Meanwhile, Jeremy Foo, founder of Elliot & Co., shared his excitement over further integrating the firm’s services and offering their clients new ways to thrive in the digital era through the acquisition.

“By combining our expertise in media engagement with Vividthree’s proven leadership in content production, we are now able to offer our customers with a comprehensive suite of content management and communications services, providing us with a competitive edge as we move into 2023 and beyond,” he concluded.

Marketing Featured Southeast Asia

W Communications bags PR remit of Singapore Council of Women’s Organisations

Singapore – Just right on time for International Women’s Day, global PR and social media agency W Communications has announced that it has sealed a partnership with Singapore Council of Women’s Organisations (SCWO), the national coordinating body of women’s organisations in Singapore, to manage its corporate communications, community outreach, and engagement programmes.

The agency’s mandate will also include supporting SCWO in redefining its core narratives to further introduce itself as the national coordinating body of women’s organisations in the country.

Moreover, the said partnership goes under the agency’s efforts to boost its portfolio of clients in the social impact sector.

Jolin Ng, general manager at W in Singapore, said that the agency gives importance to equity, therefore, it works with organisations like SCWO to fulfill its commitment towards such causes and support the organisation’s plan of impacting the lives of women and society.

Koh Yan Ping, chief executive officer at SCWO, commented, “We wanted a PR partner who truly understood the intent behind the impact we are making towards the cause and enables us to better engage stakeholders from all walks of life. W stood out with their understanding of our objectives, excellent media relations and of course, strength in corporate storytelling.”

Singapore Council of Women’s Organisations boasts more than 60 member organisations representing over 600,000 women in the country. It provides opportunities, platforms, and services to empower and support Singaporean women. 

Earlier this year, W Communications has also been tapped by food company Deliveroo to manage its corporate and consumer communications.

Marketing Featured East Asia

PR and comms association PRHK kicks off competition for young professionals in HK

Hong Kong – Hong Kong’s association for public relations and communications professionals, PRHK, has announced the launch of its 2023 PR Young Lions Competition. The competition is open to young professionals in Hong Kong aged 30 and below.

The competition will select a winning team of two to represent Hong Kong at the Global Young Lions Competition which will take place during the Cannes International Festival of Creativity in June. This will be the first competition to take place in person at Cannes in 3 years. 

PR Young Lions Competition will occur from 14 to 15 April this year. The format will follow that of the global Young Lions competition, where entrants will be asked to devise a campaign in response to a brief in 24 hours using their creative and strategic thinking. 

The competition brief will be set in partnership with a local NGO to be revealed at the competition. Criteria include creativity (40%), strategy and insight (30%), tactics and execution (20%), and relevance to the brief (10%)

The winning team will be granted their Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity experience that includes sponsorship on travel, accommodations and passes in-person in June 2023.

Previously, the association launched a 27-page toolkit to help promote work-life balance amongst industry teams.

Marketing Featured Southeast Asia

PH ad agency GIGIL expands services, to now include PR, media

Manila, Philippines – Local independent agency GIGIL has now announced an expansion to its services, which will now include full public relations and media planning and buying services to the public. 

According to the agency, the launch of these new services will also help boost the performance of clients’ campaigns, as well as complement GIGIL’s campaign ideas.

GIGIL’s PR services include media relations, crisis management, digital PR, KOL/Influencer management, community relations, events management, strategic communications, brand awareness, content management, CSR, and activation. 

Meanwhile, its media planning and buying service will continue to provide comprehensive media strategies and employ creative-driven media tactics. It will offer 360-degree media channel planning, management and execution that cover traditional, digital, and social media.

The agency’s PR arm started two years ago, and has earned over PHP100m in PR values combined from its various projects. The media planning and buying services, on the other hand, started in 2021, and have worked with clients such as Netflix Philippines to create media executions for campaigns.

Jake Yrastorza, managing partner at GIGIL said, “We have always envisioned GIGIL Philippines to be an ‘ideas’ agency, first and foremost. With our full-service PR and media departments, our ideas will have a greater chance to move culture, so our clients can move more products off shelves.”

The agency update comes months after GIGIL has announced its expansion to the United States and Canada, as well as unveiling its metaverse division ‘Metama’.

GIGIL has been known for creating humorous and tongue-in-cheek campaigns for brands such as RC Cola, Orocan, Julie’s Bakeshop, Unioil, and Allianz. They are also responsible for multiple campaign drives for Netflix Philippines, including for shows such as Trese, All of us Are Dead, Red Notice, and Money Heist: Korea.

Marketing Featured APAC

TEAM LEWIS unveils global practice VIVID, to transform traditional reputation mgmt

Singapore – Global marketing consultancy TEAM LEWIS is launching VIVID, a new global reputation and impact practice. The new practice aims to change the traditional reputation management theatre of operations which will weave together brand consultancy with creative engineering and real-time reputation management. 

Commenting on the new milestone, Yvonne van Bokhoven, EVP for Europe and APAC, said, “VIVID is designed to engineer new creative approaches to reputational content, engagement and brand experiences. This approach is built on the understanding brands are an emotional experience, rooted in what stakeholders can feel and understand.”

She added, “Real impact is made by understanding how audiences want to engage and connecting on the causes that matter most to them.” 

The global consultancy has developed the practice to respond to the rapidly changing digital-first world which now puts a premium on the metaverse, immersive augmented reality brand experiences, and emotional video-based storytelling.

“VIVID will inject pace, emotion, creativity, and visual thinking into reputation management and purpose campaigns,” shared TEAM LEWIS. 

According to the consultancy, VIVID was inspired and influenced by the work done around the world by the TEAM LEWIS Foundation. Story-telling skills and millions of dollars have been shared with important community causes, each nominated by a TEAM LEWIS staff; such has provided VIVID with a unique experience of purpose-driven causes and charities which represents a diverse global community. 

Tapping into the skills and knowledge from across 24 offices and 600 staff, VIVID will assemble bespoke teams for each client. Cross-discipline, geography, and specialist consultants will work together to aim to deliver impactful and creative outcomes at speed. 

The VIVID practice will be led by Helen Ellis, the agency’s global sustainability lead and reputation expert. 

To date, VIVID has already delivered work for clients including Schneider Electric, SkyScanner, and OKX. 

Platforms Featured East Asia

HK-based industry body for PR PRHK launches toolkit to help promote work-life balance amongst industry teams

Hong Kong Taking overtime at the workplace is sometimes inevitable, most especially now that the work-from-home set up has blurred the lines between work and rest – this practice can be a challenge for most. PRHK, an industry organisation for public relations and communications professionals in Hong Kong, has come up with a solution to this problem by launching a toolkit called ‘Working Smarter for the Future’ which aims to help industry leaders and working teams to practice better workflow processes and combat overtime. 

Initiated by the next-gen sub-committee of PRHK, the 27-page toolkit gives ample recommendations on planning tools, policy updates, and working tips that industry leaders can use to facilitate a healthy working environment amongst team members, whilst making the work-life balance possible. Meanwhile, resource planning and additional support are also presented for individuals and working teams.

The committee that initiated the toolkit includes Karolis Adomaitis of Fleishman Hillard, Carol Yeung of Golin, Penn Leung and Jesa Amparo of Creative Consulting Group and Sara Cheung of Edelman. 

The said toolkit is also an answer to PRHK’s latest research data which revealed that the top three causes of overtime are tight deadlines and last-minute requests, lack of manpower, and various meetings. The same survey also showed that 75% of respondents from the industry perceive overtime as normal with another 70% having experienced physical or mental health issues, considering overtime as a factor.

Carol Yeung, co-chair of the PRHK’s next gen sub-committee said, “The launch of our ‘Working Smarter for the Future’ toolkit is another step in moving towards making work-life balance a reality for Hong Kong PR and communications professionals. We especially want the profession to overcome its inertia on the issue of unreasonable overtime.” 

Meanwhile, Carbo Yu, chairperson of PRHK added, “PRHK’s mission is to represent, champion, promote and grow the PR and communications profession in Hong Kong. This project has achieved just that, gaining significant positive response from professionals across the industry. PRHK will continue to be an enabler for working smarter as we help people navigate Hong Kong’s dynamic communications landscape.”

With the toolkit launch, PRHK said it commits to delivering more resources such as conducting workshops to help in drawing boundaries, managing hybrid work, and time management.