SAN FRANCISCO—International public relations agency Hill & Knowlton has joined forces with independent and minority owned agencies Headquarters Advertising, SAESHE Advertising and The Walker Marchant Group to form DIVERSAlliance, which will focus on multicultural communications.

Headquarters, which is based in San Francisco, and Los Angeles-based SAESHE have previously worked with H&K’s L.A.-based diversity communications group on social marketing assignments including the BabyCal, Healthy Families and Teen Pregnancy Prevention campaigns for the California Department of Health Services. In addition, HeadQuarters and Hill & Knowlton are partners on the award-winning Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) CARE campaign, which targets ethnically diverse, low-income consumers

And H&K’s D.C. office has collaborated with The Walker Marchant Group, which was launched two years ago by former Weber Shandwick exec Ann Walker Marchant.

“DIVERSAlliance allows Hill & Knowlton to expand its already considerable expertise to better serve our clients and the growing diversity market,” said MaryLee Sachs, president and CEO. “Virtually overnight, we have deepened our client services with a combined team of 560 talented professionals in multicultural marketing and corporate communications.”

Multicultural consumers today comprise one in every four U.S. residents, and according to the Selig Center for Economic Growth, the combined purchasing power of the African-American, Asian American, Hispanic and Native American consumer markets is $1.6 trillion in 2002.

HeadQuarters, SAESHE and The Walker Marchant Group are not affiliated with WPP, Hill & Knowlton’s parent company. The alliance marks the first time H&K has taken part in a partnership not centered around a specific account.