Helping clients improve their standing in the investment community is the mission of a consulting division launched last week by the public relations unit of Arnold.
The division, Arnold Capital Insight, endeavors to position clients and communicate characteristics of their business and operations—such as growth strategies, management strengths and brand placement.
The group is currentlyworking with two unnamed clients, pursuing prospective accounts and seeking to forge relationships with existing Arnold clients.
Heading the group is longtime Arnold public relations staffer John Isaf, a senior vp, who manages a 10-person team. He reports to D.A. Hayden, president of Arnold's overall public relations group. The consultancy plans to bring aboard additional staff with strong backgrounds in the financial services arena.
Bill Alberti, an investor relations specialist at Arnold, will be Capital Insight's planning manager.
"It really gives us the opportunity to tell a much bigger story than just the numbers," Isaf said. "The numbers are just part of the bigger story."
Bill Montbleau, a consultant in Burlington, Mass., said that since not many agencies in New England offer a consulting service, it has the potential to be a lucrative area for the shop. "When it's working right, it can be a win-win situation for everybody," he said.
"This is a huge opportunity for existing clients within the entire Arnold worldwide partners network," Hayden said.
The department plans a 90-day turnaround to advise clients, which then have the option of continuing work with Arnold or applying its advice in-house. "It gives clients a blueprint to address Wall Street concerns," said Hayden.
Three steps are involved: analysis of a client's valuation and the competitive environment, as well as its buy-side and sell-side perceptions; defining a plan based on that analysis; and delivery of the plan using initiatives to help in-vestment professionals better un-derstand clients' business models.
Agency clients include Ameritrade, Brown Brothers Harriman, Lufthansa, Honeywell, McDonald's and Volkswagen of America.