Motor industry PR specialists, Automotive PR (APR) and Torque PR, have merged, in a deal creating the largest independent automotive public relations group in Europe. 

    The two brands will continue to operate independently, under the ownership of Orb Communications Group Ltd, APR’s parent company.

    At the same time, the Group is launching two new services to the automotive sector: a market research division specifically targeting the growing Chinese market, and Sceptre Social Media, a pure Social Media consultancy to advise, and train PRs in the use and benefits of social platforms. 

    APR has been at the heart of the automotive industry for 11 years, with a B2B focus that serves clients including Bosch, Continental Tyres, DAF Trucks, Optare, TATA Steel and Vauxhall. APR also operates a growing global network which currently includes eight partner offices across Europe and North and South America, India and soon Australia and has its own business in China. 

    Torque PR was established in 2009 by Peter Haynes and Phil Hale and has grown rapidly, providing consumer PR and event management for premium auto brands that include Land Rover, Jaguar, RM Auctions, GTO London and luxury lifestyle event Salon Privé, as well as UKiP Media and Events. 

    Haynes and Hale will join APR’s Martin Hayes, Marco Ferrari, Belle Moss and Mus Kortach as executive directors on the board of Orb Communications Group, to oversee all its business interests. 

    The Group is also adding Orb PR to its portfolio of operations to cater for growing demand from non-automotive industrial clients. 

    Orb Chairman, Martin Hayes, said: “This really is a perfect marriage, with APR and Torque having complementary skills and clients. This deal provides us an excellent springboard to develop wider client services, the first of which we are announcing today. 

    “It also provides Orb Communications Group with a young and dynamic management team for the future and I’m delighted that Peter and Phil are joining us for the long haul,” he concluded.