This week’s announcement came as the group expected its revenue for the six months to 31 July to decline by ten per cent.
The two agencies will merge on 1 May as a response to the changing market environment, but Next Fifteen CEO Tim Dyson denied that cost savings were the primary motivation. He said: ‘Long-term financial benefits were a secondary factor.’
The integration would result in a restructuring charge of £500,000 and a ‘handful’ of ‘back office’ staff being made redundant, said Dyson.
Inferno was established in 2003 by staff from Bite. Grant Currie, Inferno founder and MD, will take a position on Bite’s global board. Inferno director Paul Mackender will become deputy MD, Bite EMEA.
The group said its first half adjusted profit before tax increased 15 per cent to £3.55m from £3.08m and revenues increased ten per cent to £33.5m from £30.4m. But Dyson insisted: ‘There is no sense that tech is more affected than the rest of the market.’
He added that he did not expect an economic recovery in Europe until June or July.