NEW YORK: RF|Binder has acquired Annie Longsworth’s CSR-focused consultancy, The Siren Agency.
Longsworth, the founder and CEO of The Siren Agency, will join RF|Binder as executive MD at the end of this month. She will lead RF|Binder’s new San Francisco office, working to increase the agency’s West Coast presence.
Based in San Francisco, the consultancy’s services include insight collection, strategic discovery, and social storytelling. The shop, which consists of Longsworth and four staffers, will become a division of RF|Binder called RFB|Siren.
"We are going to use RFB|Siren as our brand in the CSR area," said Amy Binder, founder and CEO of RF|Binder. "We are looking to expand our San Francisco office over time."
The deal will bolster RF|Binder’s focus on working with purpose-driven brands, corporations, and nonprofits, as well as one of its key objectives: helping clients "find their unique voice on the issues transforming business and society," according to a statement.
Binder said she chose to acquire the firm because of Longsworth, who launched The Siren Agency in January 2015 after three years as CEO of Saatchi & Saatchi S. Previously, she spent nine years as president of Cohn & Wolfe in San Francisco, where she led the global sustainability practice.
"[CSR] is an area we see as growing and very important; we think it has expanded way beyond consumers into investors, and our client base has shown that," said Binder. "We wanted to bring someone on board who had a breadth of experience and is recognized as an expert [in this area]."
The Siren Agency’s clients include Caesars Entertainment, Ramblers Way, and Jackson Family Wines. RF|Binder is bringing on all clients and staffers. Siren’s revenue over the past 12 months was about $700,000, said Binder. Financial information about the deal was not disclosed.
"This deal gives us an expansion of resources; RF|Binder has a much broader set of capabilities that I can offer my clients: creative, measurement, and social," said Longsworth. "I am excited to be able to offer them as an integrated part of the solution set."
Longsworth added that she is excited about the commitment RF|Binder is making to the social impact space. RF|Binder has led comms and social impact strategy for clients including CVS Health, Tupperware Brands, Bank of America, Booz Allen Hamilton, Capital One, Dunkin’ Brands, H.P. Hood, Pax World Investments, and SASB. New York-based RF|Binder also has offices in Boston, Los Angeles, and Oklahoma City. The firm’s 2016 revenues were flat at $12.5 million.
"It’s more important than ever as more brands are figuring out they have to stand up for their purpose and values; the timing is really good," Longsworth said.