Holmes Report 29 Nov 2016 // 3:12PM GMT
LONDON — Accenture has acquired UK independent agency Karmarama, the latest in a series of deals that have seen consulting giants snap up digital and creative players.
Karmarama brings its 250-strong team spanning brand strategy, advertising and mobile experience capabilities — including public relations shop Kaper — to Accenture, following in the footsteps of other recent digital acquisitions that the company has made.
These have included Japan's IMJ and AD.Dialeto in Brazil; Pacific Link, a set of independent digital agencies serving Hong Kong and Greater China; Chaotic Moon, an Austin, Texas-based creative technology studio; and Swedish digital content and commerce player Brightstep.
In a recent analysis, the Holmes Report investigated the hectic pace of agency acquisition among consulting companies such as Accenture, IBM and Deloitte — finding an industry that is reshaping its offering amid rapid digital disruption.
Founded in 2000, Karmarama received backing from Phoenix Equity Partners in 2011. Two years before that, the marcomms group hired former Shine exec Chris McCafferty to launch Kaper. McCafferty, a Karmarama shareholder, will continue to lead the group's £2.5m public relations unit.
"For Kaper, it offers us the opportunity to work on even more progressive, integrated customer experiences with global brands across international markets," said McCafferty. "We believe PR will continue to become more digital and data-driven, so we’re excited to get our hands on Accenture Interactive’s market leading technology and digital thinking."
Karmarama’s Jon Wilkins (executive chairman), Ben Bilboul (CEO), Sid McGrath (chief strategy officer) and Nik Studzinski (chief creative officer) will continue in their current roles and take on additional Accenture Interactive leadership positions the firm's Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Latin America region.
"Acquiring a creative agency in London, where some of the world’s most iconic creative work is produced, will help us reshape how brands imagine, create, and deliver customer experiences,” said Brian Whipple, head of Accenture Interactive. "Karmarama will become part of the world’s largest digital agency, expanding our global capabilities across experience, marketing, content and commerce with excellence in creative and mobile."