Cliffs Natural Resources wanted to demonstrate that its $5 billion acquisition of Consolidated Thompson Iron Mines in Québec was a net benefit to Canada to receive approval under the Investment Canada Act. But a high-profile acquisition was withdrawn only months before and the country was on the verge of a federal election.
We put an integrated communications and government relations strategy into place that included briefings at the local, provincial and federal levels. We paid close attention to traditional and social media coverage and developed quick responses to address shifts in public sentiment. Facilitating input to the minister of industry to ensure that provincial concerns were identified and addressed early in the process, was central to our strategy. The result? Approval was actually granted during the federal election – which few believed was possible – with the support of the governments of Québec and Newfoundland and Labrador.