Cake to open US shop in wake of Havas takeover

Consumer agency Cake plans to open its first non-UK agency in New York in early 2009 following its acquisition by Marcoms giant Havas.

Mathieson: expanding into the US
Mathieson: expanding into the US

The group bought Cake for £12m last week in a deal squeezed in before this month's tax changes (, 4 April).

Cake founder and chief executive Mike Mathieson said: ‘We always wanted to expand into America. It will be a modest starting point. I'm a great believer in growing organically, so it will be fewer than ten people.' He added that the agency would be ‘an American set-up, with American people'.

Cake sold to Havas for £12m

Cake will join the French group's Havas Media, the company's global media arm, rather than sitting alongside Biss Lancaster in the Euro RSCG stable.

Mathieson and the senior management team have neg­otiated a five-year earn-out deal. He said plans had been afoot to sell the business since the beginning of last year. They were attracted to Havas because ‘it was about finding someone who will let us carry on being who we are', he said.

Havas said Cake would join a roster of eight other specialist branded entertainment agencies housed within Havas Media, including France, Spain, Portugal, Germany, Argentina, Mexico, Chile and India. ‘Our group's strategy for expansion is to focus on ­organic growth, start-ups and targeted and timely acquisitions,' said Havas global CEO of entertainment Juan Bascones.

-- Separately, Edelman has acquired digital agency Spook Media, instantly doub­ling its digital revenues, rep­orts David Quainton.

When Robert Phillips took the CEO role at Edelman a year ago, he suggested the agency's digital output in the UK was underperforming. ‘Since then we have added £1m of our own revenue. Spook doubles that,' said Phillips. ‘There is a clear synergy in our views about the conversation economy and the future of digital comms.'

Spook will retain its branding within Edelman and offer web design and development, search engine marketing and content management. Enter your main article text here. You may paste from Word by using the 3rd icon in on the 2nd row.

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