City PR guru heads voting change business group

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One of the City's best-known public relations advisers is forming a powerful campaign group of top company chairmen and leading industrialists to lobby for a"Yes" result in May's referendum on electoral reform. Roland Rudd, the founder of Finsbury PR agency, is in talks with a number of the UK's most senior businessmen about whether they would join him to create a lobby group for the AV referendum set for 5 May.

Once Mr Rudd has gauged how much interest there is among senior businessmen, he then plans to form a "Yes" group to raise a fighting fund. One source said: "Many top businesspeople are extremely interested in the outcome of this referendum. Just as they are committed to corporate governance, so they are interested in the legitimacy of the country's governance. Many of them believe that AV will produce a fairer electoral system."

Mr Rudd was also the founding chairman of Business for New Europe, working with Lord Browne, the former boss of BP.