Elliot Sloane’s 10-year-old public relations agency works across three sectors: about a third of its business involves financial communications, a third is public affairs, and a third is crisis—but across all three sectors Sloane & Company earns its fees by delivering candid and courageous counsel directly to the C-suite at times of great stress. The past year was a good one for the firm, which saw revenues increase by 10 percent to around $11 million (though the bottom line has always been more of a priority than the top) and a host of high-profile assignments. Sloane was brought in by Philips Electronics to communicate with the global investment community a fundamental shift in its business; worked with Green Mountain Coffee Roasters to address a prominent activist investor; helped Walgreens through a very public dispute with Express Script; and added Chesapeake Energy and the American Gas Association to its clients in the issues-rich energy sector (where it has picked up awards for its efforts on behalf of T Boone Pickens). Pound for pound—Sloane has a staff of about 20—few firms are doing as much contentious, high-profile business.

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