NEW YORK: MSLGroup’s former global social media and digital leader, Stephanie Agresta, has launched a consultancy that focuses on accelerating the growth of startups.
Agresta described the venture, which has yet to be officially branded, as part consultancy, part angel investor. She launched the New York City-based business on Wednesday.
She will aid clients with communications strategies, marketing business development efforts, and strategic product counsel.
"I will consult with companies for retainers, but I will also take equity in [clients’] firms," she explained. "I feel I am making a long term investment when I join a board of advisors."
Agresta is specifically seeking clients that are startups in the technology industry. Accounts already onboard include reputation growth and advocacy company Qnary, executive coaching program Brand U, influencer marketing platform MAVRCK, and visual comms agency Gapingvoid.
"Technologies that map to my expertise are very attractive to me," she said. "PR is changing so much right now, so small startups and emerging technology companies that are relevant to PR and communications should feel like they are part of the industry."
Agresta added that she is also passionate about talent development, supporting the evolution of the PR industry, and helping women in the tech space.
She left her role as global practice director for social media and digital at MSLGroup in June after being in the position since December 2012. While there, she worked with executives from around the world on social and digital vision, strategy, and talent. At the start of her time at the firm, she was overseeing 15 staffers, most whom were based in MSL’s New York office.
When asked why she left MSLGroup, Agresta told PRWeek she "felt a desire to be back external facing, more on the cutting edge of what is next versus trying to do that from the inside."
She added that "in a global practice role you are trying to bring in new tech partners and train people, but there are never enough resources to do that."
Previously, she led social media at Weber Shandwick as MD of social media in its digital communications practice. Agresta was also EVP and global director of digital strategy and social media at Porter Novelli, and owner of Stephanie Agresta Consulting, which she launched in 2007.