LONDON—Huntsworth, the global public relations and healthcare communications group, is expanding its U.S. presence and its public relations operations with the acquisition of Dutko Worldwide, a Washington, D.C., public policy firm, for an initial consideration of $33.6 million. The firm will be managed as part of Huntsworth’s Grayling brand—which includes a strong public affairs presence in the U.K. and Brussels—but will be a resource for all group agencies.
Huntsworth is acquiring the entire share capital of Dutko and its subsidiaries. Based in Washington with 10 offices around the U.S., Dutko was founded in 1981 and has evolved into one of the largest independent government affairs, strategy and management consultancies in the U.S., offering federal and state lobbying, government market analysis and positioning, global strategic consulting, political intelligence, grassroots, polling research and risk management and critical infrastructure protection consulting.
Dutko’s key clients include Abbott Laboratories, Booz Allen Hamilton, The Coalition to Advance Healthcare Reform, CITGO Petroleum Company, GlaxoSmithkline and Johnson Controls.
According to Huntsworth chief executive Lord Chadlington: “Public affairs and government relations are an essential part of many global programs. Huntsworth now has over $80 million of such work, with 85 professionals in offices in London, Scotland, Wales, Brussels, Los Anegeles, Sacramento and now with Dutko in Washington, D.C.”
The business is being acquired from its employees and Lake Capital Partners for an initial consideration of $33.6 million, including $22.2 million of Huntsworth shares $11.4 million at the end of 2010. Further performance-based consideration will also be payable based on profits for each years to 2012 to a maximum consideration of $44.6 million.
Under the terms of the acquisition, Huntsworth will assume Dutko's net debt of $9.7 million.