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Tuesday, 07 March 2017

Beattie, the creative communications group, has made its third significant signing in 2017 with the recruitment of digital marketing guru Deborah Hair.

And she immediately called on the Chancellor of the Exchequer to invest in more Government-led support for the UK’s digital and mobile infrastructure.

A digital academic, Hair warned the competitiveness of British companies will be irrevocably damaged unless significantly more money invested each year by the government and private sector.

Speaking ahead of Philip Hammond’s Budget on Wednesday, she said: “Upgrading our digital and mobile network is as important as improving our road and rail infrastructure. We need broadband speeds of 100Mbps+ across the country if the UK is to keep pace with more digitally advanced and faster growing economies.

“The digital sector is growing faster than the rest of the economy therefore additional investment is needed to keep the UK competitive in a global market.

“Such investment will be expensive, but it will pay dividends for the country in the long-term and the Chancellor could do his bit by providing either additional resources or tax-breaks for businesses looking to invest.”

A former research associate at the University of Dundee, Hair joins Beattie from Edinburgh digital agency Whitespace.

She is the agency’s third big signing in as many months.

Kevin Roberts – the former global CEO of Saatchi & Saatchi – was appointed chairman of Beattie Communications Group in January. And the following month, former Grayling CEO Alison Clarke came on board as chairman of its ultra-specialist Only Marketing brand.

CEO Laurna Woods said: “In 2016, we recruited 30 new people into the agency to handle our growing client base.

“In 2017 we are continuing to recruit across all our offices as well as making strategic appointments at a senior level. When it comes to digital marketing, Deborah is outstanding and I look forward to her having a massive impact on our business.”

Beattie’s digital clients include Discovery Channel, High Street TV and pharmaceutical giant Merck.

Since January, Beattie Group has recruited Charlotte Lowe and Laura Withers in London, Jamie Connolly and Patrina Nolan in digital, Tomas Fallon in Birmingham, and Scot Morrison, Thessa Buchanan and Carla Rinaldi in Glasgow.

Headquartered in London, the group has eight offices in the UK. It recently announced its expansion into Canada.