Maja Pawinska Sims 22 Jan 2018 // 7:21AM GMT
LONDON — 20 years after it was founded by Rachel Bell, the Shine Communications brand has been retired and fully merged into The Academy.
Dan Glover and Mitch Kaye set up The Academy in 2014 and took over leadership of Shine in January 2016. The agency’s consumer unit continued to be known as Shine until this month.
Kaye told the Holmes Report that the full merger means “the agency has a single brand, a clear identity and a shared purpose to deliver for our clients. The Academy’s approach of ‘more than PR’ has been reflected in Shine’s work since January 2016, so it’s business as usual in many ways: an acceleration of the path we have already started to go down.”
Shine founder Bell took the role of chairman in 2016; she remains in this role and as a minority shareholder. Kaye said: “Rachel is at the end of a phone for us to tap into her wisdom, experience and energy. She gave me my first agency job, and backed me to set up Mischief in January 2006. She is one of the most inspirational people I know and Dan and I are lucky to have her with us.”
After its launch in 1998, Shine grew rapidly, picking up multiple awards on its way to becoming a top 10 consumer PR shop. The firm was also highly-rated for its culture, and in 2012 it topped the annual Sunday Times list of the UK’s Best Small Companies To Work For.
The Academy’s clients, including Disney, AB InBev, Domino’s, Amazon and Morrison’s, remain with the agency, which is planning a number of new hires for 2018.
The team has recently finished its first TV ads for Pharmacy4U, and Kaye said more silo-busting creative work was part of The Academy’s plans for the future: “We’ve created print ads, cinema ads, TV shows, documentaries and feature films, and all our work plays out across digital and social paid channels. Most of our clients have now worked with Jubba, the experiential agency we own a stake in, and our film production team, headed by BAFTA-nominated filmmaker Gary Tarn, so they understand what we are trying to achieve together and are really supportive.”