DigitasLBi acquires Liquorice, a leading digital marketing agency in Africa
- Acquisition will strengthen DigitasLBi’s presence in emerging African markets
Cape Town, South Africa – July 2014: DigitasLBi, the global marketing and technology agency with 6,700 digital experts working across 40 offices in 26 countries, has today announced the acquisition of Liquorice Africa,
Liquorice is one of Africa’s leading digital marketing agencies specialising in a range of services from web, mobile, social media, CRM, content creation and search engine marketing.
Founded in 2005 by Chief Executive Miles Murphy, Liquorice currently employs 115 people in four offices deploying work across across sub-Saharan Africa. The agency has long-term relationships with some of Africa’s biggest brands including Unilever, Distell, Sanlam, Pioneer Foods, SAB Miller, SA Home Loans and Elizabeth Arden.
Liquorice’s audited Revenues for the year-end 31 December 2013 were ZAR 47m and the deal values the business at over ZAR 80m.
The acquisition of Liquorice further strengthens DigitasLBi’s global footprint, providing it with unparalleled marketing and technology expertise in fast-growing South African markets, as well as the ability to help both local and global clients transform themselves for their digital age.
Liquorice will form part of DigitasLBi’s Middle East & Africa region under the leadership of Anil Pillai, who takes on the newly created role of Chief Executive, UK, Middle East & Africa.
Commenting on the acquisition, Pillai said: “Liquorice is great business that is perfectly placed to help brands in emerging African markets harness the transformative power of digital technologies. Liquorice is an exciting addition to the DigitasLBi family and I look forward to working with Miles and his team to capitalise on the huge growth potential of sub-Saharan Africa.”
Murphy said: “We are tremendously excited about this opportunity to take our already successful South Africa business onto the global stage with DigitasLBi. Several potential partners approached us, but DigitasLBi stood out head and shoulders above the rest. We believe DigitasLBi is the most progressive marketing and technology agency in the world and we look forward to working together to grow our presence throughout Africa and beyond.”
Ewen Sturgeon, Chief Executive, International, DigitasLBi, added: “The acquisition of Liquorice demonstrates our on-going commitment to strengthening our expertise in fast-growing markets and providing both our local and global our clients with a full suite of best-in-class digital services wherever they may be in the world.”
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About Publicis Groupe
Publicis Groupe [Euronext Paris FR0000130577, CAC 40] is one of the world’s leading communications groups. The Groupe offers a full range of services and skills: digital (DigitasLBi, Razorfish, Rosetta, VivaKi), advertising (BBH, Leo Burnett, Publicis Worldwide, Saatchi & Saatchi), public affairs, corporate communications and events (MSLGROUP), media strategy, planning and buying (Starcom MediaVest Group and ZenithOptimedia), healthcare communications, with Publicis Healthcare Communications Group (PHCG), and finally, brand asset production with Prodigious. Present in 108 countries, the Groupe employs 62,000 professionals.
DigitasLBi is a global marketing and technology agency that transforms businesses for the digital age. We help companies of all shapes and sizes decide what’s next… and then we take them there.
In 25 countries around the world, across 40 offices, there are more than 6,700 digital experts working to enrich people’s lives via our unique blend of strategy, creativity, media and technology.
Our skills span insight, brand building, content creation and distribution, as well as the ability to help clients organise themselves for the consequences of change. We act as strategic partner to some of the world’s most exciting brands across travel, financial services, FMCG, publishing, telecoms and retail.
There are many things that make DigitasLBi unique but if we had to choose one it would be our ability to connect data with storytelling to help make brands special, shareable and more ultimately valuable wherever, whenever and however people choose to engage with them.
Liquorice is one of Africa’s leading digital agencies. Key areas of expertise include mobile, web, social media, CRM, content creation and search marketing. Liquorice’s Cape Town office was set up in early 2005, Durban & Bellvile in 2007 and Johannesburg in 2010. Liquorice has some of the country’s largest brands as clients including, Unilever, Distell, Sanlam, SAB, Pioneer Foods and SA Home Loans. With over 115 professional staff, Liquorice provides its clients with ‘Digital Innovation for Brands’.