Friday, 23 April 2010

Darren Caplan, Simon Nayyar - is this criticism fair?

This story was posted on 1st April (it doesn't look like an April fool) on Yahoo News: Move over MPs expenses, there's a new scandal in town

It says: "Hackney South and Shoreditch Conservative candidate Simon Nayyar is campaigning on a ‘save our local shops' ticket. Meanwhile, the company for which he is head lobbyist, Citigate Dewe Rogerson, represents Asda, owned by US giant Walmart - aka the company that killed off local shops in America." To check Spinprofiles

"Darren Caplan is standing in neighbouring Hackney North and Stoke Newington and, like Nayyar, he is spearheading a "support local businesses" campaign, "so those out of work have more opportunities to find new jobs." Also in common with Nayyar, he heads up lobbying for the PR firm Brands2Life, whose clients include Tesco, the friend of local business!" and B2L seems to confirm this

On this website Caplan says: "The B2L Public Affairs practice is headed by me, Darren Caplan. I have extensive political and influencer campaigning experience in Westminster and local/regional politics." Probably a very normal lobbyists CV, but what influencing has he been doing in "local/regional politics"?

1 comment:

  1. Open letter to 'Blood and Property' readers

    1. I believe in supporting local businesses. I would like corporation tax and red tape cut, and Labour's planned National Insurance jobs tax prevented, so that local businesses can grow and create more local jobs.

    2. I would like large businesses such as Tesco to see their business taxes similarly reduced, so they can continue being a successful part of UK plc, and employ more people. This, in my opinion, does not threaten local businesses - the economy needs to grow for everyone, and the government should try neither to pick nor prevent winners.

    3. I am the Director of B2L Public Affairs, the public affairs practice of Brands2Life, a full-service communications agency. Tesco is not, nor has ever been, a B2L Public Affairs client. For a list of clients, see the B2L Public Affairs listing in the Association of Professional Political Consultants register, which is publicly available for anyone to see at any time -

    4. My background is included on my website profile, and includes professional public affairs experience - see I refer readers in particular to the following section:

    "Since 2001 I have been working in communications on integrated public relations and public affairs projects to raise the profile of client campaigns. It’s said by some that this means I do not live in the real world, but the kind of campaigns I work on - whether helping to secure political and community support for hospitals such as the nearby Royal London, promoting advanced ‘Building Schools for the Future’ technology or widening telecoms and digital access for all - benefit many people, most of whom one can safely say ‘live in the real world’! Part of the work that I do means that I know how Westminster works, and so can use this knowledge to the benefit of people living in Hackney."

    5. I would like to point out that B2L Public Affairs is a member of the Association of Professional Political Consultants, the self-regulatory body for UK public affairs professionals in the consultancy sector - see To be accepted, APPC members need to demonstrate that they are open and transparent about who their clients and staff are, and that they adhere to a Code of Conduct, ensuring high standards. Furthermore, APPC member staff are not allowed to hold parliamentary passes to carry out their work, and so have no more access to the political world than any other member of the public, including parliamentary candidates.

    6. 'Blood and 'Property' is right to infer that the voters of Hackney North & Stoke Newington are entitled to know whether I would be a good Member of Parliament for them. The answer is to judge me on my track record as your MP. I have made it clear that as the MP for Hackney North & Stoke Newington, I would focus on three areas which I believe are currently the priorities in the constituency - more jobs, better schools and cutting knife and gun crime, which is tragically costing lives. If I fail to deliver on these, voters should vote me out at the next available election.

    In summary, if elected as your MP, I would look forward to using my professional experience to help get local businesses supported and creating as many jobs as possible. If readers would like to know more please do get in touch - I would be delighted to hear from you.

    Yours sincerely

    Darren Caplan
    Conservative parliamentary candidate for Hackney North & Stoke Newington
    07956 820145 (m)