DALLAS: Fleishman-Hillard has boosted its public affairs clout in
Texas by acquiring Allyn & Co.
The firms did not disclose financial terms of the deal, brokered by York
consultant James Arnold and under negotiation for more than a year.
Allyn & Co. employs nearly 20 staffers with 2001 gross billings
estimated at $6 million, including some political ad revenue.
Allyn & Co. will operate independently as a Fleishman company.
Founder Rob Allyn said he talked to three other large PR firms or
conglomerates, but was attracted to Fleishman's strong Texas presence
and understanding of public affairs. He added that some other groups
wouldn't allow PR firms to do political work or graphic design, two of
his agency's strengths.
"(Rob Allyn's) going to be an integral part of our public affairs
practice group," said John Graham, Fleishman's chairman and CEO. "We
expect him to be involved in national and international pitching."
Allyn & Co. has grown in size and influence since founder Allyn worked
on Vicente Fox's successful campaign for the Mexican presidency. Since
Fox's election, Allyn & Co. opened an office in Mexico City, and
established its Rose & Allyn joint venture in Phoenix. The firm also
employs staff in Austin.
This deal follows closely on the heels of Fleishman's December
acquisition of Washington's Greer, Margolis, Mitchell, Burns &
Associates, and plays into the agency's strategy of focusing on public
affairs as a growth area.