Starting today, Hungarian PR agency Café PR continues its operations under the name FleishmanHillard Café. The Budapest Business Journal talks with CEO Anita Balaton about the rebranding.
BBJ: When did the rebranding talks begin? How long did the process take?
Anita Balaton: We have been the affiliate partner of FleishmanHillard for more than 10 years, and during the last one, one-and-a-half years we began discussing the possibility of strengthening our cooperation, by adopting their branding and name. Now, as a previously unprecedented move, FleishmanHillard, one of the biggest communications advisory firms in the world, has allowed us to use their name, without taking a stake in the company, or demanding any significant structural changes in our operation. This show of trust is a tremendous validation and appreciation of our work done in the last 10 years.
As Nick Andrews, senior vice president & senior partner at FleishmanHillard put it, “When we search for a FleishmanHillard partner, we look for an agency which embodies creativity, excellent client service and brilliant execution. Over the 10 years we have worked with Café PR in Hungary, we have found all that and more. It is rare to find such energy, imagination, and inspiration in any agency and we have been lucky to introduce Café PR to many of our clients over the last decade and more. The creation of FleishmanHillard Café is the next stage in what has been an exciting journey together and we look forward to the many years to come.”
BBJ: What is the most significant benefit brought about by the rebranding?
AB: To sum it up, we will keep what we love about Café, while also adopting all the best practices, and the knowledge of one of the biggest agencies in the world. In practice, this will mean a more intensive flow of know-how to and from Café, which will benefit our clients primarily. By joining the FleishmanHillard family, we will become partners with an Omnicom company, a global PR agency with a past reaching back to 70 years and whose network spans the globe, serving the biggest companies in the world. This joint drive for excellence, this vast network, knowledge and experience will be unlocked now to all of our clients. And while FleishmanHillard Café remains part of the Café Group, we will become a member of a much larger family of communications professionals.
BBJ: The company is set to stay Hungarian-owned even after the rebranding. What kind of independence does this grant FleishmanHillard Café?
AB: Café PR and FleishmanHillard already shared most of their values, we believe in data-driven, insight based strategic planning, outstanding client service, and authentic, professional delivery. When it comes to the operational side, we have also adopted a structure that is completely compatible with the way FleishmanHillard operates, so we could share regional clients, or work together on local ones more effectively. The relationship between FleishmanHillard Café and FleishmanHillard , when it comes to approval, or day-to-day operation will remain the same as it is today. The fact that they have let us join their family this way really shows the trust we have earned with them during the last decade.
BBJ: Does the company intend to focus on more regional projects now?
AB: In a way yes, but handling regional relationships and projects will be in no way new to us. We have built systems across multiple markets and have been coordinating projects from Budapest for NNG, IKEA or InnoEnergy before. With the help and support of FleishmanHillard’s agency network, we hope to be even more effective when it comes to regional projects.