THE last thing a major public company wants if it is defending itself against an unwanted bid is to be without tried and tested financial PR advisers.
But that’s how Marks & Spencer will find itself if rumours of an £8bn bid from a Qatari sovereign wealth fund turn out to be true.
For M&S recently disposed of its financial public relations agency Tulchan after eight years following the leaking of its last set of (disappointing) results.
In itself that should have been no problem, if only the retailer had managed to sort out a replacement it was comfortable with.
Chief executive Marc Bolland thought he had done just this, by agreeing with Brunswick supremo Alan Parker that he would take back the account he had lost to Tulchan in the first place.
But in the end Parker felt unable to pick up the account, owing to the fact that one of Brunswick’s other clients – Tesco – appeared none too happy with what it saw as a conflict. Bolland will no doubt find somebody in short order, but it will not be his first choice adviser at a time when he needs help most.
Cally Squires is away