Bunhill: John Coyle

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The Independent Online
JOHN COYLE, one of the highest-flying City PR men of the 1980s, is back in business. Coyle, 50, is a consultant to Barbican Corporate Communications - a company formed just two weeks ago in partnership with John Emerson, a one- time director of Saatchi & Saatchi Advertising.

Four times married, Coyle has had what could best be described as a colourful career. Indeed he is a colourful man.

As managing director of the then quoted PR outfit, Broad Street Associates, Coyle became rich. Then fate dealt him a cruel hand. He was removed from his job on the orders of the then Broad Street chairman, Jimmy Gulliver, while in a hospital bed suffering from a life-threatening bout of pneumonia.

He finally departed Broad Street in 1988 and started another company, Square Mile Communications. All went well; Coyle married for the fourth time and the fees poured in. Then one day the tax man knocked on his door asking for pounds 500,000. At around the same time he contracted throat cancer, which he treated with liberal quantities of malt whisky and his doctor treated with radiotherapy. Sadly, the pounds 500,000 demand was not as easy to deal with, and Coyle plumped for bankruptcy.

Now recovered from the cancer, Coyle is full of optimism: 'I've done it twice before, and I'm sure I can do it again.' At present, Barbican does not have any clients, but that is about to change. 'I had a call this morning from a potential client who I'm seeing next week,' he growls.