Britain’s Standard Chartered has selected Maitland as its corporate communications firm amid charges that the banking giant schemed with the Iranian government to launder $250B during 2001 and 2007.
The New York State Dept. of Financial Services, which lodged those allegations, says SC’s actions left the U.S. financial system “vulnerable to terrorists.”
The New York regulators blasted the 150-year-old bank as a “rogue institution” that hid more than 60,000 transactions on behalf of Iranians banks and companies, making millions in fees. Those alleged activities “helped sustain a global threat to peace and stability.”
SC rejects the NYSDFS charges, believing the allegations “do not present a full and accurate portrayal of the facts.”
The bank claims that 99.9 percent of its transactions with Iran complied with U.S. sanctions that were in place at that time.
It says an internal review did not turn up a single transaction to any entity that was deemed a terrorist organization by the U.S. Government.
SC shares have been battered by the New York charges, losing 24 percent of their value on the London Stock Exchange today.
Maitland won the PR job in a competitive review that included incumbent RLM Finsbury.
The firm says it will help SCs “in-house team in building a stronger and consistent corporate narrative, broadening and further differentiating its reputation among corporate audiences.”
Maitland CEO Neil Bennett, former business editor of the Sunday Telegraph, leads the SC work.