Madrid, Brussels – 10 March, 2021 – MARCO, a leading independent global communication consultancy with over 150 consultants in 10 offices on 4 continents, opens its 11th owned office, strengthening its EU Affairs business. The new office will be led by Dr. Vassilia Orfanou who has extensive expertise in providing legal, procurement, and communication counsel to EU institutions.
Dr. Orfanou, a Greek-American, brings a global approach to her new EU clients, having worked in influential business ecosystems in New York, Washington DC, Brussels, London, and Luxembourg. She holds a Ph.D. from the Geneva School of Diplomacy and International Relations. She is both a Harvard Kennedy School policy research expert and an MIT Sloan School of Business Artificial Intelligence Strategist. She has 19 years of experience as a high-level Communications and EU Funded Projects’ Strategist.
Prior to joining MARCO to head up its Brussels office, Dr. Orfanou worked for the European Investment Bank and the European Commission, in close partnership with Deloitte, Ecorys, European Dynamics, and managed more than 200 projects. She has equally represented Marriott International and Bloomberg LP. She is the author of the Media’s early warning effect in the timelier deployment of peacekeeping operations, while also conducting media diplomatic research in cooperation with Luxembourg’s Diplomacy and Communications Institute.
MARCO specialises in brand, crisis, and reputation management and is a global leader in Country Brand Building, sustainability issues, and fighting climate emergency.
The new Brussels office will house a team of high-profile, Brussels-based EU experts who have previously cooperated with the European Commission. MARCO’s EU institutional client list includes the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO), the European Investment Bank (EIB), the European Environmental Agency (EEA), the Union for the Mediterranean (UfM), StartUp Europe, DG TAXUD, and DG COMM, among others. Private Clients include Amazon Prime, Netflix, WAO, Udemy, Audible, Kraft Heinz, Mattel, Snapchat, among others.
MARCO launched their own docuseries, “The New Frontiers of Communication” in February 2021 (https://www.lasnuevasfronteras.com) with subtitles in five languages, also available to view on Amazon Prime Video in Spain, the UK, and the US. The docuseries created by MARCO – a first for an agency in the overall strategic communication sector – explores how communication is being transformed in today’s society following its patented visionary approach TFCOM® (Transcending Frontiers in Communication). The series investigates new technologies, new language frontiers, adaptability, and emotions, as well as how global communication is constantly changing and accelerating due to the pandemic.
“About 40% of our work consists of accompanying institutional clients in their owned, earned, and paid communication needs mostly across Europe and Africa but also in the USA, LATAM, and AsiaPac,” said Lagae. “While lots of campaigns, content development, and outreach are carried out by our in-house team of 150 consultants in 11 offices on 4 continents, MARCO also relies on its MSL network of over 100 offices across the globe.”
Further imminent expansion plans of MARCO include the opening of more offices across Europe and acquisitions in sub-Saharan Africa.
MARCO is the most awarded and best-rated independent global agency based in Madrid, specialised in branding and reputation building. Formed by a team of over 150 consultants, it has its own offices in Madrid, Barcelona, Lisbon, Brussels, Paris, Miami, Mexico City, Bogota, Lima, São Paulo, and Casablanca, as well as affiliated MSL offices in over 100 markets.
In 2020, the agency was recognised as the best communications consultancy in Southern Europe by the SABRE Awards, having received the award for best consultancy of the year in Iberia in 2019. The agency was also awarded the Best European Agency of the Year in 2017.
MARCO has recently acquired the magazine Ejecutivos and has re-launched Ejecutivos.es with the aim of positioning it as the reference for online Spanish-speaking media in the economic and business sectors in Spain and Latin America.
MARCO’s Founder and CEO, Didier Lagae, was previously Deputy General Manager at Edelman, Head of Reputation Management EMEA at Weber Shandwick and Director at Weber Shandwick Iberia, External Communications Manager EMEA at Levi’s, and Global Head of Communications at The Body Shop. Didier Lagae was named European and Global PR Professional of the Year in 2019 by PRWeek and Stevie Awards respectively, coinciding with the publication of his book ‘Country Brand, Country as a Brand’. Didier is a Climate Leader for Al Gore’s The Climate Reality Project.
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