LONDON: Financial and strategic communications specialists StockWell Communications and R Holloway & Associates will combine their businesses.
The newly merged entity will operate under the StockWell brand and will be a London-based reputation management agency with 20 consultants and more than 40 clients.
StockWell managing partners Tim Burt and Philip Gawith and Holloway & Associates' Richard Holloway, who will be a managing partner at the agency, will lead the firm.
The three will be equal equity holders, accounting for a combined majority stake in the enlarged StockWell Group. Iceni Capital Partners, StockWell's original financial backers, will be a significant minority shareholder in the firm and Julian Hanson-Smith, a partner at Iceni, will continue in the role of chairman.
StockWell was founded in 2010 by former Brunswick partner Burt and ex-Maitland CEO Gawith. It has worked for clients including Nissan, Xstrata, Alcatel-Lucent, and Jaguar Land Rover.
Holloway & Associates was launched in 2002 by Holloway and Laura Gilbert, both of whom previously worked with Gawith at Maitland. The agency has focused on supporting international companies' communications with the London-based financial community, having worked for clients including France Telecom Orange, Sky Italia, and EXOR.
“[Holloway] is one of the most accomplished and experienced advisers practicing in the London market, and he has built a high-quality business, both in terms of people and clients,” said Burt and Gawith, in a statement. “This combination brings together a powerful mix of experience, allied to product, geographic, and sector strengths.”
Gawith told PRWeek UK that the rationale for the deal was two-fold: first building an agency of scale that can compete for the city's top briefs, and second, the synergy of the businesses and their complementary strengths.
“I've known both [Gawith] and [Burt] for many years, and have always admired their work and the way they go about it,” said Holloway. “Bringing our two teams together represents a wonderful opportunity to build a new firm under the StockWell name capable of providing clients with innovative, informed, and balanced advice, and one that will ensure an exciting, challenging, and rewarding environment in which our people can work.”
The merger is effective immediately, and the newly enlarged group is seeking new premises to bring the two teams together.
This story originally appeared on the website of PRWeek UK, the sister publication of PRWeek at Haymarket Media.