The Romans will focus on creating campaigns that are rooted in contemporary culture, encompassing PR, social media and experiential.
Misha Dhanak, former managing director of Citizen, and Joe Sinclair, its former creative director, are the agency’s founder members and majority owners.
The Romans was created with the backing of creative advertising agency Mother.
Dhanak joined Citizen from Shine and was previously head of PR at Paramount Pictures.
She said: "As an industry, we know that PR has to evolve and punch through potential constraints as the media landscape continues to redefine itself. The scale, energy and resources of an agency like Mother offer such exciting potential to do that. The support of an independent partner gives The Romans the freedom to create exceptional work for ambitious clients, and an exceptional working environment for ambitious staff. We can’t wait to get started."
Sinclair, a two-time Cannes PR Lion winner, joined Citizen in 2013 from Burson-Marsteller, where he was also a creative director.
He said: "People don’t care about survey stats in a press release, they care about music, telly, gaming, fashion, sport - in short, culture. We founded The Romans because we care about culture too – especially how brands can use it creatively to reach and engage their audiences through earned media."
While at Citizen, the pair secured numerous new clients for the firm, including Bacardi Global, Go Compare and Cancer Research UK, clocking up more than 40 award nominations in 18 months.
Robert Saville, partner at Mother, said, "When Mother looks to help develop a business we have one criterion. We back great people. Not markets or sectors. Misha and Joe are amazing creative people and they will make the Mother family better. Exciting times."