Six to scrap for consultancy of the year at Public Affairs Awards
Could fast-growing Lodestone be the one to watch?
Cicero Consulting, Hanover Communications and Lodestone are among the six firms are in the running for consultancy of the year at this year’s Public Affairs Awards.
Cicero is hoping to cap off an eventful year by picking up the coveted gong next month. Iain Anderson’s agency significantly expanded its reach in June when it acquired Westbourne Communications for a seven figure sum. The firm then made one of the most eye-catching hires of the year when it stole former Sky News deputy political editor Joey Jones from Weber Shandwick.
But Cicero faces tough competition from agencies including Hanover Communications, which recently flexed its muscles by hiring Guto Harri, the former BBC journalist and Boris Johnson aide, as a senior adviser.
Meanwhile Lodestone makes the cut after recently seeing a massive 41 per cent jump in revenue. The agency was set up by former Jefferson director David Wild in 2013. According to the PRWeek league tables, the agency’s revenue climbed from £943,364 in 2016 to £1,205.044 in 2017.
Speaking to PRCA director general Francis Ingham for a recent 'lunch with' interview for PAN, Lodestone boss David Wild explained what he was trying to do with the fast-growing agency. He said: "In the end people don’t employ political advisors or PR specialists unless they have very difficult, ethical issues to handle. And, that’s what we wanted to do with Lodestone. And that’s what we do. At the core of what we do is our analysis. We live and die on its quality. That’s the thing that sets us apart."
Also in the running for consultancy of the year are Finsbury, Lansons Communications, GK Strategy. City lobbying powerhouse Finsbury is the biggest firm on the shortlist with 102 UK staff and a UK revenue of £30 million last year.
Last year, in a suprise outcome the top consultancy gong went to little-known outfit Cascade Communcations. This year, the Public Affairs Awards, run by the PRCA, take place on Thursday 29th November with PAN editor David Singleton as a member of the judging panel. See the full 2018 shortlist here.