MagnaCarta Appoints Francois Baird As Non-Executive Chairman

Former Edelman Africa chairman joins Board to drive growth and deepen strategic leadership.

Francois Baird

We are delighted to announce the appointment of communications management leader François Baird as non-executive chairman to drive growth and help deepen MagnaCarta's expertise in strategic communications management consultancy for the global banking and financial technology marketplace. François Baird is founder and chairman of Baird's US LLC and of British headquartered international communications management consultancy, Baird's CMC. MagnaCarta is a member firm and directors Denise Gee and Simon Hardie are also partners in Baird’s CMC, an international communications management consultancy with 34 partners in 17 countries who employ approximately 500 people. He was Chairman, Africa at Edelman, the world's largest public relations firm, as well as founder and former chairman of Baird’s Renaissance, a communication management consultancy based in Johannesburg, which was acquired by Edelman in 2013. Baird is a member of the Board of the Centre for Communication and Reputation Management at the University of Pretoria, of the Presidential Precinct in Charlottesville VA, James Madison’s Montpelier in Orange VA, the Institute for Child Witness Research and Training in South Africa and founder of the Fair Play Movement, a pressure group working to stop the illegal trade practice of dumping worldwide. “Growth of the digital economy and continued pressure from consumers for faster, cheaper and borderless commerce is well documented, but the complexity of the fintech story, and its implications for traditional providers and new entrants is often misunderstood, and increasingly challenging to articulate. “The global market for financial technology is valued at over $480 billion with rapid anticipated growth in the years ahead. In an increasingly fragmented media and marketing landscape, communicating the purpose and visualizing the benefits of your product or service – to both customers and stakeholders – is critical to success,” says Denise Gee, founder of MagnaCarta. “Traditional sales, marketing and engagement are changing as rapidly as commerce. François’s appointment brings to MagnaCarta a wealth of international experience, strategic leadership and a deep understanding of the financial services environment.” Comments Baird; “Fintech is mission-critical for the future of the financial world. However, if ever an industry needed to persuade people of its benefits, and demonstrate the value it creates, it’s fintech, where innovation is often a heady mix of new thinking and opportunity, but difficult to explain and understand. MagnaCarta is therefore critical to the mission of fintech, in helping organisations and companies across the spectrum to transform their engagement, sales and communication strategies, at a very exciting time for the industry.”


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