Scramble to acquire healthcare agencies

Chime Communications is looking at acquiring a healthcare PR agency as industry experts agree healthcare PR is surviving the recession in comparatively rude health.

Chairman Lord Bell said Chime was already talking to healthcare agencies.

'In this difficult economic environment, healthcare is not as affected as other sectors,' said Bell. 'Most PR groups are considering expanding their healthcare business.'

Bell's disclosure follows the acquisitions earlier this month of two of the industry's biggest independent healthcare agencies. Global communications group Huntsworth acquired Tonic Life Communications to bolster its healthcare PR offering (prweek.com, 13 July). The agency has been bought for an initial payment of £3m. It was ranked number nine in this year's Top 25 Healthcare league table (PRWeek, 26 June).

Meanwhile, Euro RSCG Life bought Medicom Group for an undisclosed sum in a bid to strengthen its global and European medical education offering (PRWeek, 3 July).

The 40-strong Surrey-based Medicom Group will become Euro RSCG Life Medicom and will lead Euro RSCG Life's med ed offering. The move also bolsters Euro RSCG Life's regional capabilities and expands its market access offering.

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