FOX Communications, the public relations firm preferred by the government when Pak Lah was the prime minister, is closing down its Johor Baru office after less than two years of operations. The firm's signboard at Danga Bay is still visible but there's hardly any activity at the office, my sources told me. Come Dec 21, that signboard will be taken down.
It's inevitable, if you ask me. Fox raised eyebrows 3 years ago when it started getting plum government-related jobs worth millions of ringgit despite its lack of track record, starting with the massive merger exercise of the three plantation giants. It went on to snap up many choice accounts, including the various economic corridors, the Monsoon Cup,the National Service, the Economic Planning Unit and even the Polis DiRaja Malaysia. The JB office was opened after Fox was given the Iskandar contract. The former journalist who quit NST's JB office to head Fox over there has started his own PR agency recently.
What it lacked in track record, Fox more than made up with its powerful connections. The two former editors who founded/headed Fox were close to the then 4th Floor, the MoF 2, one Kalimullah Masheerul Hassan, who was Pak Lah's media adviser then, and Khairy Jamaluddin, the PM's son-in-law.
Some people suspected Fox was set up by some insiders to cash in on the various projects which these insiders knew were coming on-stream, but this theory was never proven.
p.s. I hear there's a Fox copy-cat/wannabe out there as you read this. Najib, watch out!