MADRID: LLYC has purchased a majority stake in PR and marketing agency Bam Communications, marking its first major investment in a U.S. agency.
LLYC is acquiring an 80% stake in the company at an initial valuation of $13.2 million to be paid in cash. Bam’s initial price may be adjusted on the basis of performance from 2022 to 2025.
The deal, effective Wednesday, strengthens LLYC’s capabilities and cements its position as a leading global communications, digital marketing and public affairs consultancy, the firm said in a statement.
The partnership is part of LLYC’s plan to double in size over the next five years through selective acquisitions of companies that operate in key areas or strategic markets. The stake in Bam specifically expands LLYC’s outreach to the West Coast, aiding its current offices in New York, Washington, DC, and Miami. The two firms' combined U.S. headcount amounts to 65 professionals across the East and West coasts.
Bam’s search for a deal like this has been years in the making, according to CEO and founder Beck Bamberger. The pairing between LLYC’s values, culture match and global footprints is what solidified the firm as the right partner for the agency.
“Aside from our U.S. clientele, we currently have clients in locations such as Australia and Germany, and our goal is to continue increasing our global footprint,” said Bamberger.
The addition of Bam makes LLYC U.S. the firm’s third largest operation with consolidated total revenue of $17 million, only after Spain ($39 million) and Mexico ($18.1 million).
Bam will continue to operate under its own brand, while creating value-added synergies with the company’s entire international network. Bamberger will continue to hold a stake in the company, maintaining her title as CEO leading Bam’s operations and holding an executive community role for LLYC U.S.
No layoffs occurred as a result of the deal and no clients will be impacted.
The purchase of Bam is the eighth acquisition for LLYC over the last eight years. Completed integrations include Beso (Mexico), Apache (Spain) and China (Spain) in 2021; Factor C (Chile) in 2020; Arenalia and Diplolicy (Spain) in 2018; and Impossible Tellers (Spain), S/A Comunicaçao (Brazil) and EDF (U.S.) in 2015.
“LLYC currently has a very strong presence in Spain and Latin America and although we have some locations on the East Coast of the U.S. we are excited to really break into the market with Beck and Bam’s expertise,” LLYC partner and global CEO Alejandro Romero said. “This is really an integration more than an acquisition, and it is LLYC’s first integration in the U.S. to expand our footprint and have a deeper understanding of the media landscape and general market.”
LLYC was advised by a team at Greenberg Traurig, P.A. led by Antonio Peña and Henry Roque. Bam was advised by Agency Futures led by Doug Baxter.
Bam is headquartered in San Diego, California, with operations in 14 states from coast to coast in the U.S. Bam runs integrated communications programs for venture backed technology companies as well as human resources, DE&I and talent consulting through its human comms offering. Clients include Carputty, Capchase, Mitek Systems and Jobox, among others.
LLYC, previously Llorente & Cuenca, has 20 offices across Latin America, Europe and the U.S. and is part of FGS Global’s network of associate partners. It was ranked 36th in revenue worldwide in the PRWeek Global Agency Business Report 2022, and was named the Best Agency in Europe (outside the U.K.) in last year’s PRWeek Global Awards.
The firm named Romero global CEO last November. The Madrid-based communications and public affairs agency reported record revenue and profits for 2022 at approximately $96.3 million (€88.9m) – a rise of 39% from 2021.
LLYC's clients in the U.S. include AB InBev, DHL, Siemens, Fortinet and the University of Arizona, among others.