Mercury Public Affairs has signed an $840K one-year agreement to represent high-flying Hikvision USA, the China government-connected leader in the making of video surveillance systems.

Hikvision, which produces state-of-the-art facial recognition systems, has cameras in operation throughout China and in US airports, prisons, schools and homes. They are used in US military bases and were installed in the American embassy in Kabul Afghanistan until 2016.

Some observers fear that Hikvision, in which the People’s Republic of China owns a 42 percent stake, serves the interests of the Chinese government by sending footage of American activity to intelligence officers in Beijing.

Mercury, an Omnicom unit, provides strategic consulting and management services, such as lobbying, government relations and PA work geared to the National Defense Authorization Act to Hikvision.

It will determine the impact of NDAA provisions on Hikvision and handle its responses to them. Mercury also will do outreach to US government officials.

The $70K monthly retainer contract runs through Aug. 7, 2019.

Mercury is joining Burson-Marsteller on Team Hikvision.

That WPP unit has a $25K monthly retainer deal through the end of the year for issues management, external PR, message development, fact sheets, media relations/monitoring.