Connect PR Limited has purchased the entire share capital of Seal Communications for an undisclosed sum as part of a long-term growth and investment programme.
Connect PR, established by joint owners Rob Hampton and Hazel Crawford in 1999, employs 20 PR professionals at its Wolverhampton headquarters and is listed in PR Week’s Top 150 UK PR Agencies. The agency has billings of over £1.5 million per annum and represents a diverse range of clients including the UK’s largest housebuilder Persimmon Homes, Volkswagen, MAN Truck & Bus and Autoglym.
Connect PR is part of the Connect Group, employing 150 people and providing advertising, marketing, digital and direct marketing solutions to clients including Jaguar Land Rover, Lafarge Tarmac, Bentley Motors and Birmingham Airport.
Shrewsbury-based Seal‘s parent company Morris & Company is selling its successful consumer and b2b agency as chief executive Katie Morris leaves her role at Seal to be appointed director of marketing to concentrate on the thriving group of Morris businesses spanning residential and commercial property, care and site machinery.
Speaking of the acquisition, Connect PR MD, Hazel Crawford, said: “This is great news for both businesses. We’re looking forward to welcoming the Seal team into our business and supporting the growth of the brand which has an enviable reputation and long-standing client relationships.”
Connect Group chairman, Rob Hampton, said: “The purchase of Seal is an ideal fit for both Connect PR and the wider Connect Group. We have ambitious plans for Connect PR and won’t rule out further acquisitions as we look to capitalise on the skills of the excellent team we’ve established within the business.”
Katie Morris said: “Connect has always been up there as an agency I admire and joining forces feels right as the next step in Seal’s evolution. These past few years in particular have seen Seal flourish with our performance over the last financial year being our best for over five years. In such good shape, the time seemed right to make this strategic move. I am incredibly proud of what Seal has achieved, our enviable and loyal clients and the talented team who I know will continue to thrive as part of the Connect family.”
The Seal name is being retained and the 10-strong team and key clients will transfer to Wolverhampton.
Connect PR used its long-term advisors to support it with the purchase. Ed Thompson, partner, Lancaster Haskins provided financial advice and Richard Griffiths, partner, Higgs & Sons led the legal team on the acquisition.