Beleaguered public relations firm Bell Pottinger has gone into administration in the UK after running a scandalous campaign that incited racial tensions in South Africa.
The PR firm put itself up for sale last week but was unable to find a buyer.
“The administrators are now working with the remaining partners and employees to seek an orderly transfer of Bell Pottinger’s clients to other firms in order to protect and realise value for creditors,” a BDO spokesman said.
“Following an immediate assessment of the financial position, the administrators have made a number of redundancies.”
Bell Pottinger has been “heavily financially impacted” by the PR campaign that it worked on, said the administrators BDO.
South Africa’s main opposition party, the Democratic Alliance (DA), blamed the PR firm of “divide and conquer the South African public by exploiting racial tensions in a bid to keep Jacob Zuma and the ANC in power”.
Some of the firm’s largest clients such as HSBC and Investec cut ties with Bell Pottinger because of the scandal.
“The level of those losses, compounded by the inability of the business to win new clients, was such that remaining management were left with no option but to commence the process to place all UK Bell Pottinger entities into administration,” BDO was quoted by The Guardian as saying.“