Hilton International snatches Sumner from United Airlines

Ladbroke-owned hotel chain Hilton International has appointed Jonathan Sumner as brand communications director. He replaces Simon Oldfield ,who joined Mercedes-Benz (UK) in March (MW March 26).

Sumner’s role will involve managing the Hilton brand, developing communications strategies and overseeing international advertising and corporate identity programmes.

Sumner joins the company from United Airlines, where he was international marketing manager. He was responsible for helping to launch and market Star Alliance – a consortium of global airline partners.

Sumner will report to vice-president of marketing Morag McCay. “Jonathan brings with him very valuable skills and experience, including an understanding of alliance marketing, which is particularly important for us as we develop our relationship with Hilton Hotels Corporation [HHC],”says McCay.

The worldwide alliance with HHC, owner of the Hilton name in the US, was signed early last year to create a platform from which to promote the Hilton brand in a more consistent way. Plans for common global advertising – such as a new unified logo – are being finalised.

Hilton International made a 177.1m profit in 1997. The combined global group comprises more than 420 hotels in 50 countries.

Hilton International appointed ad agency Bozell Worldwide in February.

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