Youth PR outfit FFI and student promotion company Beatwax are to
merge in a bid to tackle the fragmenting youth market.
The new joint-owned business, named FFI Beatwax, will launch officially
in mid-February. Beatwax head Chris Ward is moving his 18 staff into
FFI’s offices this week.
He and FFI chief Mike Mathieson will become joint MDs, offering clients
PR, music and film promotion, design, sales promotion, sponsorship
acquisition and ’street activity.’
FFI or For Further Information was started in 1989 by Mathieson. The 32
year-old former Virgin Records head of promotion, set up the firm to
specialise in music PR. Today it has eight staff handling music, film,
retail, event PR and brand building for FMCG clients such as Red Bull,
Rizla and Vodaphone.
Ward, an ex-band manager, launched Beatwax five years ago to market
music to the student population. Like FFI it has expanded to offer film
and club promotions but remains focused on the student market.
The two companies worked together last year on the sponsorship and club
tour of Australian film Muriel’s Wedding.
Ward said FFI and Beatwax each covered half of the youth market.
’Clients were asking for both services,’ he added. ’It became a natural
Mathieson said FFI had seen a ’massive change’ in the youth market which
is becoming more fragmented through the growth of targeted media,
leisure and entertainment.