Fleishman CEO: Economy ‘Made Us Evolve A Lot Faster In All Respects’


By Joe Ciarallo Comment


Fleishman-Hillard CEO Dave Senay sat down with The Globe and Mail during a swing through Toronto promoting FH’s “Digital Influence Index Study.”

In the interview, Senay says the economic downturn made the agency, “evolve a lot faster in all respects.” He also said FH beat Omnicom’s revenue numbers for PR — which were down 10 percent last quarter — something he also told PRNewser when we spoke with him after the earnings report in early February.

Last year, Omnicom reported its PR revenues, which include Fleishman-Hillard, were down about 10 per cent. Is that part of what’s driving this push for integration: the notion that, hey, you don’t need to be just a PR firm, you can drive strategy, too?

Well, yeah, necessity’s the mother of invention, but I would say this was happening long before 2009. The digital integrated global platform became really my overall approach to driving the company’s growth when I became CEO in July ’06. Now, 2009, when you have a downturn in the economy like that, that’s like a brush fire over the Great Plains – ultimately it’s a renewing event, because it just made us evolve a lot faster in all respects. I do want to make a side note: We consistently outperformed whatever Omnicom reported, I can assure you.

Full interview here.