NEW YORK: Lifestyle PR agency Syndicate merged with New York-based social media shop WFG Media, creating Syndicate Media Group.
According to Syndicate founder Nathan Ellis, the merger has increased Syndicate's revenue by 35% and contributes to a projected annual revenue of up to $5 million.
“This gives us access to bigger budgets and retainers,” he said.
Over a year ago, Ellis and WFG founder Nima Abbasi met at a Google conference on the role of social media in the luxury space. They initiated talks about a strategic partnership, which a few months later led to merger discussions. Ellis and Abbasi will now both hold the title of founding partner.
“We realized clients want one agency to offer more integrated services, and sectors in the traditional space still have a lot of value,” said Abbasi.
He added that Syndicate's growth over the past few years, its similar luxury and lifestyle client base, and its New York and Los Angeles office locations had been attractive to WFG.
Both partners confirmed that the merger, resulting in a combined headcount of 25, did not involve layoffs. Rather, the agency hired three new employees in the last month, and is looking to hire at least three additional executives before the end of the year, noted Abbasi.
The agency's retainer clients include WFG's Veuve Clicquot, Remy Martin, and Oscar de la Renta, as well as Syndicate's Morgans Hotel Group and Soho House, among others.
Together, the partners recently won Danish furniture company BoConcept, Topguest.com, and Viceroy Hotel Group, among other accounts the team could not yet discuss.
“The new business pipeline is outstanding,” said Ellis. “We've been meeting with luxury, hospitality, fashion, and automotive brands.”
The agency is also exploring potential agency partnerships in the UK and Paris, to help serve international client brands, he said.
He added that Syndicate Media Group, headquartered at Syndicate's New York office, is currently working with an undisclosed agency on a new logo and website, slated to launch in about a month.