McCann Worldgroup, part of Interpublic Group (NYSE: IPG), today announces it has completed the acquisition of independent digital marketing agency Lakestar Media (Lakestar).
The acquisition has been undertaken to enhance McCann Worldgroup’s Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) capability across all of its operating companies in the UK.
Lakestar was founded five years ago by current Head of Sales Demetrious Loizou. Chief Executive Neil McKay joined the company in 2008 and has played a leading role growing the organisation to its present size where it now employs 50 colleagues. The agency specialises in digital marketing and has built a core strength around SEO.
Following the acquisition, Lakestar Media, which has offices in London and Manchester will be operated and managed by McCann Manchester and the deal will enhance McCann Worldgroup’s digital offering in the UK. Lakestar will continue to operate its own client base as well as working alongside McCann Worldgroup companies to deliver an enhanced SEO offering to the client base.
The deal is the latest in series of acquisitions by both McCann Worldgroup and McCann Manchester. Two years ago McCann Manchester acquired research, NPD and innovation consultancy Blue Banana. Last year McCann Worldgroup acquired All of Us and Meteorite to further strengthen McCann Worldgroup’s offering in the UK.
At the present time, Lakestar will continue to operate from its London offices and new premises in Manchester and will be working closely with all McCann Worldgroup companies in the UK to deliver highly collaborative digital solutions to clients.
Neil McKay will continue to run Lakestar following the acquisition and the current management team will remain in place. Sue Little, Chief Executive of McCann Manchester and Martin Jackson, CFO of McCann Worldgroup UK will join the board of Lakestar to manage the integration and subsequent development of the company within McCann Worldgroup.
According to Sue Little, Chief Executive of McCann Manchester, “The completion of this deal significantly enhances our SEO offering and makes our overall integrated digital offering incredibly strong. We’ve been wanting to grow our SEO offering for some time and we’ve been looking for a potential partner for well over a year. I’m delighted to be able to welcome Neil and the Lakestar team into the McCann group of companies and believe the acquisition represents an incredibly exciting opportunity for our clients.
“Lakestar has been tremendously successful in growing its business to date and I believe their expertise coupled with our reach, contacts and clients will enable us to drive strong growth in the future.”
According to Neil McKay, CEO of Lakestar, “This is a fantastic opportunity for our team to be part of a leading marketing communications agency and it will allow us to offer a broader digitally integrated solution to our clients. It gives us the opportunity to work alongside other digital disciplines and for us to align digital strategies with wider marketing communications strategies for our clients. If you embed our strengths with the broader integrated capability of McCann, you have an incredibly strong digital offering which I believe will be of real interest to both current and future clients of both agencies.
Commenting on the acquisition, Gustavo Martinez, President of McCann Worldgroup Europe said, “The successful conclusion of this acquisition further strengthens an already powerful digital offering from McCann in the UK. By acquiring an SEO specialist of this scale and experience it means our UK operations can offer clients operating nationally and internationally a truly integrated digital solution. We believe this acquisition has the potential to drive further digital growth in the UK and potentially beyond.”