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EXCLUSIVE: Razor PR named Global Best New Agency at 2021 Global Sabre Awards

Razor PR, M&C Saatchi Group South Africa's public relations and reputation management agency recently won "Global Best New Agency" at PRovoke's prestigious Global SABRE Awards, benchmarking the best PR work from across the world...
Razor PR Exco. L to R: Jannine Purkiss (Head of Operations), Dustin Chick (Partner: Managing Partner), Kalay Maistry (Partner: Client Service Director) and Christopher Lazley (Partner: Executive Creative Director)
Razor PR Exco. L to R: Jannine Purkiss (Head of Operations), Dustin Chick (Partner: Managing Partner), Kalay Maistry (Partner: Client Service Director) and Christopher Lazley (Partner: Executive Creative Director)

Razor Public Relations was recently named the world’s Best New Agency at the 2021 Global Sabre Awards. The 2021 Global PR Agencies of the Year are the result of an exhaustive research process involving more than 500 submissions and (virtual) meetings with the best PR firms from across North America, Europe, the Middle East and Africa, Asia-Pacific and Latin America.

Razor PR beat out two other finalists – Hong Kong-based Ashbury Communications and The Sway Effect out of New York – to garner the coveted award. Razor had previously been named Best New Agency in EMEA earlier in 2021.

“South African agencies are delivering world-class strategic communications. An award like this doesn’t just recognise the work we have delivered over the last 24 months since launching Razor, but are a real testament to a local industry that can stand equally tall with major global markets,” said Razor managing partner, Dustin Chick.

Chick shares with us what it means to win the title, Razor PR's journey and how important creativity in public relations is.

BizcommunityRazor PR was named the world’s Best New Agency at the 2021 Global Sabre Awards. What does this mean for the company?


There are two ways to think about this, the inward view and the outward view. Inside it’s a reminder of quality (quality thinking, quality creative and quality execution) and living true to our own values. Externally it is about “better PR” and fundamentally reframing the role of strategic comms.

BizcommunityHow is the team feeling about this recognition?


Honestly, a little overwhelmed as it sinks in that this is a “Best in the World” recognition. But beyond that, it's about holding ourselves true to the standards and benchmarks we have set. And then, simply, just keep getting better.

BizcommunityRazor PR is the first agency in SA to win this award. What do you think set the agency apart from the other agencies?


Firstly, let’s recognize that an agency in SA (and not operating in a major international market) won this award, and what it says about the quality of comms work in SA.
I think what set us apart, is a clear focus on measurement, creativity and strategy and how these come together to create real business results for our clients.
BizcommunityBriefly tell us about Razor PR's journey


Razor was formed by the M&C Saatchi Group in January 2020 with a clear focus on doing PR differently. We spent a significant amount of time crafting a proposition that allowed us to deliver better work. Since then, we have gotten on with it.

BizcommunityComment on the people, culture of Razor PR


When we launched Razor, we made a simple promise – the be a better place for our people, and our clients.
Better isn’t bigger, it's better – doing better work; being better at how we are deliberate in what we do; better at understanding the impact we create.
We are undoubtedly a high-performance culture but we spend a lot of time and energy (and money) and making sure the environment we work in places people first and sees them as moms, dads and real people long before anything else.

BizcommunityHow important is creativity in PR?


It's non-negotiable. But creativity comes in many forms.
Creativity is about how you strategically tackle and solve a challenge; creativity is how you craft relevant angles and positions, how you engage stakeholders, how you decide your channels.
So, it’s a broader view on challenging just doing things the way they have “always been done”. Then it’s about investing in creative talent – both strategic and conceptual.

BizcommunityTell us about your most successful project?


It's hard to profile just one, but successful projects include work for The South African National Editors Forum (Sanef), Newzroom Afrika, BDO and Tiger Brands. You can view the case studies at https://razorpr.co.za.

BizcommunityRazor PR has won several awards. What are the most notable ones that you're very proud of?


Being named the Best Agency in the World stands out by a country mile. But for us, awards are a sign of something more than a trophy – it's about the confidence that its work “that works”.

BizcommunityWhat's the winning recipe?


People

BizcommunityWhat's in the pipeline for Razor PR?


A few nice campaigns coming in the new year, as well as some further growth of our second office in Cape Town.

BizcommunityWhat sort of trends will the PR industry see in 2022?


I think the measurable impact is probably the most significant focus. Everyone can be busy, but it's about the impact you create that we need to profile our industry. It's all the other ingredients that make this possible

About Evan-Lee Courie

Editor: Marketing & Media; Head of Content for Entrepreneurship
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