Edelman in Polish takeover spat

Dennis Howlett has an update about the Edelman – Migut Media kafuffle which has been bubbling around on email over the last few weeks. The disagreement allegedly relates to Edelman’s attempted acquisition of Polish PR firm, BCA. Migut Media owns 51% of BCA, which it appears Edelman overlooked in its negotiations. Den’s managed to speak to Barbara Kwiecien, GM of Edelman’s Warsaw office.

The bottom line? Edelman has made a cock up of this. One of the golden rules of hostile takeovers is: ‘make sure you know who’s in control.’ Clearly, Edelman thought that Kwiecien knew everything any competitor (or ally) would want to know. Edelman’s strategists didn’t count on Migut, who has used PR spin to bite back. They also lost sight of the fact that Migut owned BCA by virtue of his 51% holding. Negotiating with the person who is doing the work is not the same thing at all.

Is there an end in sight to this nasty spat? Apparently not. According to Kwiecien: “I can’t see any middle ground at the moment.” I’m not surprised. But Edelman has to extricate itself from this mess. If it doesn’t then Edelman tarnishes its image by default and by association.

It must be frustrating for Edelman to have kicked over a hornet’s nest like this. I’ve been getting regular emails about it from Migut’s megaphone, as I’m sure other PR bloggers have. Now the media is involved and Den’s digging into the story, it’ll be interesting to see the response. I wonder whether the erudite Richard Edelman will use his blog to respond? Probably not, but given Edelman and Intelliseek recently published their guide to blogging – this gives the firm a good chance to put those skills into practice.

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