LONDON — Hanover has appointed Sarah Matthew as the new chair of its health practice. She takes over from Anna Korving, who joined in January 2017 and has taken a new role as president of Northern Europe at McCann Health.

Matthew will work with Hanover Health teams in London, Brussels, Dublin and the Middle East one day a week to support the growth of the practice, including through mentoring and coaching the senior team.

After co-founding Virgo Health in 2003, Matthew and Angie Wiles built it into a leading international healthcare communication agency. They sold Virgo to Golin in 2012 and after the integration period ended in 2015, Matthew stayed on as chair and helped to appoint Neera Chaudhary as global president of healthcare in January 2017. She left Golin in July last year, while Wiles now runs virtual healthcare agency The Difference Collective.

Andrew Harrison, Hanover’s managing director of health, said: “Sarah is legendary in our industry and I am very excited that she is joining Hanover Health. As we deepen our in-market work and expand our international reach, it feels like we are opening a new chapter in Hanover Health’s story. I know Sarah’s experience will help us continue our success.”

Matthew told the Holmes Report: “I’ve been in the agency business for over 20 years now and I took the opportunity to take a break and have a grown-up ‘gap year’. Virgo is in safe hands with Neera and MD Ondine Whittington, and it’s time for them to write their own next chapter." 

"I wasn’t sure what my next move was going to be but Hanover have a fantastic reputation in the healthcare market and when Anna Korving suggested to Andrew that he approach me to replace her, it felt like a perfect match from the first conversation. Hanover are ambitious about being the leading healthcare communications consultancy in EMEA and I’m looking to give them the strategic input that helps them stay on that path.”

Hanover Health works with more than half of the world’s top 20 pharmaceutical companies, as well as health technology businesses, trade associations, charities and healthcare providers. The practice has been a key part of Hanover’s overall growth, with average annual growth of 25% for the past four years.