Fiona Allen has been appointed as the new communications director for HarperCollins Publishers UK, following Susanna Frayn’s decision to step down after 13 years with the company.
Allen worked for Waterstones for eight years, most recently as head of brand communications, and will start her new role in January 2015. She will report into director of people John Athanasiou and will have a close working relationship with chief executive Charlie Redmayne and the rest of the UK executive team.
Redmayne said: “Fiona is one of the most experienced and inspiring comms professionals in the industry. She has exactly the right mix of creativity, strategic vision and passion for publishing that the role calls for. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank Susanna for everything she’s done for HC over the years. We’re sad to see her go and wish her well in the future.” Athanasiou added: “[Allen’s] in-depth knowledge of internal and external PR will support even more effective planning for the future, further enhancing the success of the business.”
Before joining Waterstones in 2006, Allen worked in a range of communications roles, including five years as Publicity Director at Dorling Kindersley. She said: “I am completely thrilled to be joining HarperCollins. It is a brilliant and exciting business with some of the world's biggest and best writers and properties, hugely talented teams and industry-leading innovators - I can't wait to start in January.”
From January HarperCollins UK is to move from its current location in Hammersmith, to London Bridge where it will reside in News Building (Baby Shard), along with News Corp’s other Uk businesses including the Times, Sun and Wall Street Journal.
Of her decision to leave, Frayn said: “I wish Fiona every success in the role. It’s the best communications job in publishing and I’m sure she’ll enjoy it just as much as I have. After 13 years with the company I’ve ticked off everything I came here to do. With the move to London Bridge heralding a new era for the company, it feels like the right time to seek out the next challenge. I’d like to pay tribute to my fantastic Comms team and to say a very fond farewell to the many HC friends I’ve made over the years.”
From Tuesday 6th January, Allen’s email will be firstname.lastname@example.org and her direct dial will be 020 8307 4133.