Well now. AIG subsidiary Chartis has launched a product this week called “ReputationGuard” that will offer services from Burson-Marsteller and Porter Novelli to account holders in case of a crisis situation. Policy prices vary, but a small company could shell out $10,000 in annual premiums.
Yes, we’re talking about the AIG that got all that bailout cash and became the object of intense scorn when the economy collapsed in ’08. AIG’s own crisis situation was so bad, this subsidiary changed its name from AIU Holdings to Chartis so it wouldn’t be associated with its parent company. And, according to a Harris Interactive study from earlier this year, its reputation is still pretty much in the toilet.
The Wall Street Journal also points out that B-M had worked with AIG after it received its bailout cash. Actually it was just one of a few firms in its employ during that tumultuous time (Sard Verbinnen, Kekst, and Hill & Knowlton were the others, according to TIME).
B-M has also had its own fair share of issues, like the Facebook “whisper campaign” from earlier this year that put the firm in a negative light, and even the work it did for AIG, which caught Rachel Maddow’s attention.
So, if you’re going to pay someone money to handle a tough situation, best to hire someone who has experience in that area.