Weber Shandwick Acquires Prime, Leading Creative PR Firm in Europe
NEW YORK and STOCKHOLM, May 6, 2014 – Weber Shandwick, part of Interpublic Group (NYSE: IPG), today announced that it has acquired Prime, a leading, award-winning creative PR agency in Sweden, and its business intelligence arm United Minds, effective immediately. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Founded in 1998 by Carl Fredrik Sammeli, Prime is an independent agency of 130 employees with headquarters in Stockholm. The agency is focused on all aspects of integrated marketing, including public affairs, crisis management, digital and social media, corporate communications and business intelligence. The firm is widely known for its innovative and creative global and local campaigns for leading consumer and corporate brands. Prime has built an international reputation for breakthrough creative work, winning 14 Cannes Lions, 11 Eurobests, five Clios and 14 SABRE awards over the last few years, working with clients such as Ericsson, SCA, IKEA, Electrolux, the city of Stockholm and Civil Rights Defenders.
Prime’s founder Sammeli and Executive Creative Director Tom Beckman will become members of the firm’s global leadership team. Sammeli will report to Colin Byrne, Weber Shandwick’s CEO, EMEA; Beckman will continue to report to Prime’s CEO, Markus Gustafsson, and will be named chair of the Weber Shandwick Global Creative Collective, reporting to Gail Heimann, president of Weber Shandwick.
“We have admired Prime’s work for some time and are excited to have them join the Weber Shandwick family. Prime has led the way as our industry transforms with an exacting focus to provide integrated, creativity-led concepts across platforms. We have great synergy when it comes to client service, driving innovation and business philosophies,” said Andy Polansky, CEO, Weber Shandwick.
“Our ambition with Prime was always to embrace change and disrupt existing structures in the industry, leveraging the new possibilities created by digital and social, and bringing together traditionally separate disciplines as marketing, corporate affairs, business intelligence and sustainability,” said Sammeli, Prime’s founder. “As part of the Weber Shandwick network, we now get the opportunity to create innovative concepts and activation programs in a broader global context for clients. I feel a strong cultural match between Prime and Weber Shandwick, and I am quite impressed by the way they drive change and talent development in the organization.”
Like Weber Shandwick, Prime has pioneered a cross-disciplinary approach to PR and communications, recruiting from a diverse set of backgrounds – from PR, digital and advertising, to politics, journalism and management consulting. Through broad teams consisting of analysts and planners as well as creative and media specialists, Prime has developed unique capabilities to create strong concepts and activation programs.
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About Weber Shandwick
Weber Shandwick is a leading global public relations firm with offices in 81 countries. The firm’s diverse team of thinkers, strategists, analysts, producers, designers, developers and campaign activators has won the most prestigious awards in the world for innovative, creative approaches and impactful work, including being honored as a 2014 Ad Age A-List Agency and winning four 2013 Cannes Lions. Weber Shandwick was also named PRWeek’s International Consultancy of the Year and The Holmes Report’s Best Healthcare Consultancy in the World in 2013, in addition to earning numerous best place to work accolades. The firm deploys deep expertise across sectors and specialty areas, including consumer marketing, corporate reputation, healthcare, technology, public affairs, financial services, research, corporate social responsibility, financial communications and crisis management, using proprietary social, digital and analytics methodologies. Weber Shandwick is part of the Interpublic Group (NYSE: IPG). For more information, visit http://www.webershandwick.com
About Prime and United Minds
Prime is Sweden’s largest PR agency. Based in Stockholm with offices in Malmö and Brussels, the agency consists of 130 specialists in all aspects of marketing, public affairs and crisis management, corporate communications and business intelligence. Prime’s approach is to embrace change and disrupt existing structures in the industry, leveraging the new possibilities created by digital and social, and bringing together traditionally separate disciplines as marketing, corporate affairs, business intelligence and sustainability to achieve the best business results for its clients. United Minds is the business intelligence unit of the agency. Prime has received more Cannes Lions awards than any PR agency since the creation of the PR category at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity in 2009. Prime has been the only advertising and PR employer to be ranked on the list of where students at the Stockholm School of Economics want to work. For more information, visit www.primegroup.com or www.unitedminds.se.