contracts in one of the world's violent flashpoints. The Georgian breakaway republics of South Ossetia and Abkhazia have hired the PR outfit to gain a little leverage in their war of words with big neighbor Georgia. Last year, of course, it was less about words and more about tanks and Grad rockets. Then, Georgia launched an ill-conceived attack on South Ossetia, only to be quickly overwhelmed by a Russian Army counter-blitz, which Abkhazia aided. The two autonomous regions, which remain unrecognized as sovereign nations except by Russia and Nicaragua, are virtual wards of Moscow, which is funding their crippled economies.
The Saylor Company, a Pasadena crisis-management firm, has just landed two high-profile
"The secret of a boutique PR business is to specialize," says Ross
Johnson, a former member of Sitrick & Co., and currently vice
president of corporate communications for BNC PR. "There's always going
to be a breakaway republic. So it makes sense to specialize in them --
I'm all for it."
Saylor's company will have its hands full,
given Western sympathy toward Georgia and suspicions of Russian
ambitions in the USSR's former spheres of influence.
have plenty of friends in journalism who look at me like I've gone to
the dark side," Mark Saylor is quoted in an interview that appears on
his firm's Web site. The interviewer noted that "part of the reason he
left journalism, he says, was because of ethical concerns," having been
"actively involved in exposing the paper's questionable profit-sharing
arrangement with the Staples Center in 1999."