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Cone Communications Launches Materiality360(SM)

New Service Offering Provides Integrated Approach for Identifying and Prioritizing Material Issues; Compliant With New GRI G4 Guidelines

BOSTON, Jan. 9, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Cone Communications, a Boston-based public relations agency specializing in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), is launching a new CSR product, Materiality360SM, which will serve as a one-stop solution for companies looking to identify and analyze their top material issues. The product was designed to meet the requirements of the newly released G4 guidelines of the Global Reporting Initiative, and to build on Cone's 30+ years of experience in CSR strategy, reporting and communications.

(Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20111004/NE79797LOGO )

"Stakeholders – from shareholders to employees – are demanding more transparency from companies about their CSR- and sustainability-related issues," says Liz Gorman, Senior Vice President of Cone's Sustainable Business Practices group. "We've always believed that identification of material issues is the first step in the reporting process, as it informs the topics to be covered in the report and the ones that matter most to stakeholders. Materiality is also essential for any company establishing its initial CSR/sustainability strategy and goals, or evolving its commitments in this area."

Materiality360 is a complete approach to conducting a materiality assessment, engaging stakeholders in the process, and determining the boundaries of the material impacts along a company's value chain. It is a six-to-eight week process that involves extensive external research, internal interviews and review of company documents. Materiality360 focuses on four key steps:

  • Issue identification
  • Boundary setting along a company's value chain
  • Stakeholder identification & engagement
  • Issue prioritization & recommendations

"The emphasis on materiality and stakeholder inclusiveness are two of the most notable changes with the G4 Guidelines," Gorman said. "G4 pushes companies for more transparency on their material issues, so it was clear that companies – and our clients – will benefit from a more integrated and robust approach to the materiality process." 

Cone has a long-standing history of working with Fortune 100 companies on their CSR strategies, reporting and communications, including leading food, beverage, apparel, technology and healthcare companies, among many others. Materiality360 represents the latest product offering to supplement Cone's core competency in its CSR strategy and communications work, and specifically around CSR reporting and transparency. Cone has completed GRI-certified training in both GRI 3.1 and G4.

About Cone Communications
Cone Communications (www.conecomm.com) is a public relations and marketing agency known for igniting brands with high-impact strategies and programs based in deep insights, unique subject matter expertise and innovation. Focusing on key areas such as brand communications, social media, corporate social responsibility, cause marketing, entertainment marketing, nonprofit marketing, and crisis prevention/management – the agency is positioned to help clients achieve both business and societal outcomes. Cone Communications is a part of Diversified Agency Services, a division of Omnicom Group Inc.

About Diversified Agency Services
Diversified Agency Services (DAS), a division of Omnicom Group Inc (NYSE: OMC) (www.omnicomgroup.com), manages Omnicom's holdings in a variety of marketing communications disciplines. DAS includes over 200 companies, which operate through a combination of networks and regional organizations, serving international and local clients through more than 700 offices in 71 countries.

About Omnicom Group Inc.
Omnicom Group Inc. (NYSE: OMC) (www.omnicomgroup.com) is a leading global marketing and corporate communications company. Omnicom's branded networks and numerous specialty firms provide advertising, strategic media planning and buying, digital and interactive marketing, direct and promotional marketing, public relations and other specialty communications services to over 5,000 clients in more than 100 countries.

SOURCE Cone Communications

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