Welcome to the PRmoment Podcast.
This week we’re chatting to Emma Kane, Chief Executive of SEC Newgate UK and Deputy Group CEO Deputy SEC Newgate S.p.A about her career story in public relations.
Previously Emma founded Redleaf Communications before selling the business to Porta in 2014. Porta combined with SEC Newgate in June 2019 in a reverse merger to form SEC Newgate.
This integrated a number of businesses that had been acquired over the years including Redleaf, Publicasity, Newgate, SEC and Newington.
SEC Newgate has 43 offices globally, has revenues of about $150m and employs 900 people globally.
Before we start - if you haven’t seen them already - take a look at the categories for The ESG Awards - the final entry deadline is 7th October.
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Finally, thanks to our PRmoment Podcast sponsors, The PRCA.
Here’s a summary of what Emma and PRmoment founder Ben Smith discussed:
2 mins Emma’s career is a wonderful story of PR agency secretary to PR agency CEO. Here she talks us through how that happened.
“One day my saxophone got exchanged for a briefcase!”
4.30 mins Emma gives us a potted history of her career in PR
5 mins Emma explains how a psychometric test she needed to take for a new job lead to her having a crisis of confidence!
8 mins Emma talks us through when she had an awful experience in one job, “the leadership was feral and the culture was toxic…The catalyst for setting up my own agency was a day when a book that was left on my desk entitled ‘How to dine out and look weight’’
12 mins Emma describes the decision in 2000 to found Redleaf Communications - as the most important decision of her career.
15 mins How significant was Redleaf’s acquisition of Polhill in the company’s growth story?
20 mins How and why did Emma decide to sell Redleaf to Porta in 2019 and how did the original deal with Porta work?
24 mins Emma talks us through how Porta became SEC Newgate.
25 mins Emma became Chief Executive of SEC Newgate UK and Joint Group CEO in April 2018 - here she explains why it was a turnaround job for the UK business at that point in time.
28.30 mins SEC Newgate acquired US firm Global Strategy Group in 2022 - which prior to being acquired had a turnover of $54 million in 2021 - so in PR land that’s a big deal size!
31 mins It seems to me, quite quietly SEC Newgate has had a pretty formidable couple of years. What sort of shape is the business in now? And what type of work does SEC Newgate want to be known for?
33 mins Emma talks us through how in her spare time she is Vice Chair & Chair Global Development Board for the Elton John AIDS Foundation and chair of Target Ovarian Cancer.