Point Reach & Black Bag Advertising
About the Client
Essence is a digital agency based in London, New York and San Francisco who deliver strategy, media, creative and social solutions globally. They are the digital agency of record for clients such as Google, eBay and Expedia, going beyond traditional marketing approaches, mixing cutting edge technology with shrewd business thinking and inventive creativity. In 2012, Essence was ranked #1 in The Sunday Times Tech Track 100, which ranks Britain’s fastest growing privately held technology companies; #1 in the Sunday Times HSBC International Track 200, which identifies Britain’s private firms with fastest growing overseas sales; #2 in Media Momentum’s Top 20 ‘Larger Digital Companies in Europe’ list and #5 Media (#1 independent) agency in NMA’s 2012 Top 100.
Acquisition of Point Reach Inc. – 8 January 2013
GP Bullhound acted as the exclusive financial advisor to Essence Digital Limited (“Essence”) on its acquisition of Point Reach Inc. With the acquisition of Point Reach, an award-winning mobile advertising agency headquartered in Seattle, Essence adds valuable mobile advertising expertise in the US as it continues its global expansion to offer best-in-class digital marketing on a worldwide scale.
Acquisition of Black Bag Advertising Inc – 18 September 2012
GP Bullhound acted as the exclusive financial advisor to Essence Digital Limited (“Essence”), the UK’s leading independent digital media agency, on its acquisition of Black Bag Advertising Inc (“Black Bag”). With the acquisition of Black Bag, a specialist digital media agency headquartered in San Francisco, Essence has been able to further extend its capabilities in the United States, adding a valuable presence on the west coast to Essence’s existing office in New York.
GP Bullhound advised Essence on its acquisition strategy on both sides of the Atlantic and this transaction follows Essence’s successful acquisition of Punktilio, a leading European social media agency, last year.
Matt Isaacs, CEO of Essence commented “Expansion in the US is critical to our growth strategy and establishing a base on the West Coast, through the acquisition of Black Bag Advertising, was the natural next step. GP Bullhound’s expertise and network in the digital marketing sector and their global footprint, with teams in London and San Francisco, made them the perfect fit for the negotiation and execution of this transaction.”
Matt Isaacs, founding partner and CEO of Essence, comments: “When we started talking to Point Reach it was clear early on that we had some common fundamentals – a client-centric perspective, a fusion of a broad range of digital services and an innovative culture built for digital. It was no surprise to me that Point Reach had rapidly established itself as a clear leader in the fast moving US mobile market. This deal further deepens the mobile expertise we know is vital to our clients’ success – but more than anything it brings together two organisations that set out from different starting points on the same journey: inventing the marketing of tomorrow. GP Bullhound’s expertise and network in the digital marketing sector and their global footprint, with teams in London and San Francisco, made them the perfect fit for the negotiation and execution of this transaction. We have big ambitions and are now looking ahead to further strategic moves in 2013.”
Simon Nicholls, partner at GP Bullhound commented “GP Bullhound is delighted to have advised on Essence’s acquisition of Black Bag Advertising. Already a major player in the digital media sector in Europe and New York, this expansion to the West Coast will cement Essence’s position as an international category leader.”