Private equity interest 'very exciting' for PR industry

Private equity is playing an increasingly important role in the buying and selling of PR agencies, experts have revealed.

In conjunction with the piece on the market published this week, Madsen Consulting founder Mark Madsen and D5 Capital director Rupert Ashe discussed mergers and acquisitions for PRWeek TV.

Madsen pointed to last year’s acquisition of College Group by private equity firm Vitruvian Partners as a sign of a growing interest among PR agencies outside of the sector.

‘It’s very exciting for the industry as it’s being recognised that the industry is growing up and starting to deliver much better profit lines,’ he said.

Referencing a recent WPP report, Ashe added that the UK PR industry was starting to bounce back following difficult years when other PR markets abroad were struggling to show growth.

He also pointed to GolinHarris’ acquisition of Virgo Health as a sign that owner Interpublic was re-engaging ‘after being on the sidelines'.

‘The fact it is getting back into the market is a good thing. It shows is has recovered and is looking to buy,’ he added.

Meanwhile, Madsen pointed to agencies looking longer term at their sale prospects and identified both sports and social media as key areas of growing market activity.    
   
Talking of businesses that might be looking to acquire PR agencies to bolster skills they lack, he added:
‘Social media and the digital area are areas of the budget that firms haven’t really cracked yet.’

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus

Latest Articles

Max Clifford trial jury finishes sixth day of deliberations

Max Clifford trial jury finishes sixth day of deliberations

The jury in the trial of celebrity publicist Max Clifford on 11 charges of indecent assault has been sent home and will reconvene tomorrow morning for a seventh day of deliberations.

Analysis: Fishburn chiefs keep eyes on future despite mounting departures

Analysis: Fishburn chiefs keep eyes on future despite mounting departures

Fishburn's management have defended their reinvention of the 23-year-old agency amid industry mutterings, fed by a series of director-level departures, about the direction in which it is going.

Hit or Miss? EasyJet backs Shakespeare Day campaign with world record attempt

Hit or Miss? EasyJet backs Shakespeare Day campaign with world record attempt

EasyJet aimed to break the world record for the highest ever theatrical performance for Shakespeare's 450th birthday yesterday with the Reduced Shakespeare Company performing on a flight from Gatwick to Verona.

Top PRs to gather in Barcelona for inaugural PRWeek Global Congress

Top PRs to gather in Barcelona for inaugural PRWeek Global Congress

Senior executives from IBM, Nestlé, Vedanta, GE, Cargill, Philips and Allianz will be among the speakers at PRWeek's first Global Congress.