£1m Cardiff acquisition for Freshwater

Freshwater has acquired its second company in as many months with the £1m purchase of a Welsh PR agency.

Cardiff: Merlin home
Cardiff: Merlin home

The AIM-listed marcoms group has bought Merlin Marketing and PR, a Cardiff agency with a client list including HBOS Cards and Penderyn Welsh Whiskey.

Merlin founder Bruce Morris, who started the company as a TV production business in 1985, will run the newly merged 'Merlin Freshwater Wales'.

Freshwater UK CEO Steve Howell said that the Merlin deal is part of the AIM-listed group's strategy of building up regional networks. 'The acquisition significantly enhances our existing graphic design, digital media and marketing offering,' Howell added. 'We now have a fully fledged in-house website design and development team.'

Freshwater paid £1m in cash, shares and future profits for Merlin. The company paid £2.24m for public affairs firm Waterfront in December. This acquisition takes Freshwater’s total staff to 139 in ten offices across the UK and in Brussels.

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