UK independent agency Infectious Media has announced today it is joining forces with US-based digital marketing services company Kepler Group, a move designed to give each company global reach in order to better serve their clients. The merger will see Infectious Media and Kepler Group’s workforces combined, and the two will both operate under the Kepler name, though the Infectious Media brand will be retained during a transition period.
Both Infectious Media and Kepler Group focus on big international brands. Their combined roster of clients include Hasbro, John Lewis, The New York Times, Pepsico, HSBC, and Uber. And Infectious Media CEO Martin Kelly says both companies felt they needed to expand abroad, as their clients increasingly wanted to coordinate marketing activity across markets.
“We started talking about joining up two summers ago,” said Kelly. “Both firms were award-winning leaders in their home markets. Both firms continued to grow in 2020. But we had each independently concluded that we needed to establish a global footprint to meet clients’ expanding needs. Combining forces presented a terrific way to accomplish that.”
Kelly told VAN that the two companies both specialise in similar areas. “Our businesses are very aligned covering the core digital media channels across display, video, social and search,” he said. But he added that Kepler’s position as a key service partner for Amazon on a global basis will push infectious into new territory. “They have a really developed business helping brands use the Amazon ad products and we think this is going to be a really important area for us going forward,” he said.
The move also means Infectious Media will become part of the kyu Collective, a group of creative services firms owned by holding group Hakuhodo DY. As part of the kyu Collective, Infectious will be able to leverage resources and specialist knowledge from other members, which includes business strategy consultant SYPartners, creative agency Sid Lee, and design company IDEO.
Kepler CEO Rick Greenberg meanwhile said he is confident that the two teams will integrate well. “The extended dialogue provided us a chance to make sure the teams would fit well together,” he said. “And that just became more obvious with every conversation, since both companies were built from day one to be among the most forward-thinking firms in the industry. With this acquisition, the amount of innovation talent we’re bringing together is simply awesome.”