London-based independent SO What Global was created as an umbrella company for several specialist agencies, including SO Talented, in January last year. Its founders are Oliver Parsons and Scott Clark, who previously founded Tonic Life, once the UK's largest health PR operator.
SO What said the Iris Life brand would no longer exist and that its staff and clients, which include multi-national pharma companies and sports organisations, would be integrated into SO Healthy.
Former Iris leadership Stephanie Bunten and Lee-Ann Cameron – who founded the agency early last year – will become directors and shareholders and SO Healthy will be based in central London. Moira Gitsham, who joined Iris as director at the start of April, also makes the move.
Bunten, Cameron and Gitsham had previously worked at Tonic Life under Parsons and Clark. The agency was sold to Huntsworth in 2013, with Parsons and Clark then put on gardening leave and signing non-compete agreements. These agreements have now expired, paving the way for the creation of SO Healthy.
Clark, the group's chief executive, said: "PR agency success has always been about bringing together the best talent in one place and creating the environment for them to shine. With today’s announcement, we are reuniting a winning team that has a proven track record in healthcare fuelled by a competitive energy that will make an impact from day one."