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Change & Employee Engagement
This was a complex transaction because of its impact on a multitude of stakeholders. Lansons engaged a senior team with the expertise to advise on corporate transactions, media relations and employee engagement, providing support to the management and in-house communications teams.
Advice and Ideas
Simplyhealth’s strategy is to focus on providing services in the ‘everyday health’ space, where consumer demand is growing fast. This has meant taking tough decisions, including that to sell its private medical insurance (PMI) business.
A clear risk for the Company was that news of the decision would leak, thereby destabilising the business and the sale process. So Lansons first task was to prepare a comprehensive leak communications plan, with supporting materials, while also working on preparations for a planned announcement.
A key consideration was that the rationale for the sale, as well as its impacts, should be clearly understood by all stakeholders. Lansons helped create and refine messages for both internal and external consumption – that this was a deal that made sense for all parties, representing for Simplyhealth the start of a new era with a new and exciting growth focus. Lansons created bespoke verbal and written communications and ensured that management was well rehearsed for media, employee and customer briefings.
In doing so Lansons worked in close partnership with the Company’s corporate finance and legal advisers, PwC and Addleshaw Goddard, as well as AXA PPP’s in-house communications team.
Communication of the announcement was handled professionally by well prepared spokespeople assigned specific roles.
The media response was positive with key messages around Simplyhealth’s new strategic direction in healthcare widely reported.
Employees responded positively, with the message that this was a positive development for the long-term development of Simplyhealth – and the PMI business being sold – gaining quick acceptance. Feedback from corporate customers was also positive, reflecting an understanding of the deal rationale and the choice of AXA PPP.