After last week’s speculation and bidding war, Sir Martin Sorrell has added the first member to his team of avengers, Dutch digital production studio, MediaMonks.
The digitally-led creative production company had been the focal point of bidding war between exes Sorrell and WPP – and at a reported €300m or (£266m)
, Sir Martin emerged victorious. MediaMonks marks the first acquisition for S4 Capital, the holding company formed by Sorrell after he was pushed out of WPP.
MediaMonks shared news of the deal on social media, with a cheeky post that revealed Sir Martin Sorrell’s new business card and job title: ‘Senior Monk’.
The acquisition follows Sir Martin’s comments in Cannes that he would be looking to build a different kind of holding company with S4 Capital – and the addition of Media Monks gives some clues as to what that might be. Although a digitally-based, creative production company, it looks like Sir Martin will be looking to add more capability in data and media buying.
“MediaMonks’ roots are totally in new media, and data, content and technology. Our next moves will be to build this platform further and to add meaningful data analytics and digital media buying. The company will be a unitary one with MediaMonks as its core,” said Sir Martin in a statement.
And what does it mean for the monks? Their official press release led with the statement ‘we’re not selling out, we’re buying in’.
Victor Knaap, CEO and Main Monk, said of the merger: “MediaMonks comes from humble beginnings - we started in a basement and have grown to 750 Monks around the globe. With this merger, I’m privileged to be shaping the future of the creative industry alongside a man with an unprecedented reputation for building successful businesses. We’re not selling out, we’re buying in.”
Wesley ter Haar, Founding COO said: “With this merger we’re adding the firepower to build out our consolidated offering across creative, data, media and technology to best serve and service our clients. It’s a great statement that MediaMonks is the premium platform upon which Sir Martin Sorrell’s new business is founded. That to me is also a true testament to the quality of our team and talent. Now let’s go make some stuff.”
Victor Knaap and Wesley ter Haar
MediaMonks was founded in 2001 and currently employs 750 people in 11 offices, including its Amsterdam HQ, London, Los Angeles, New York, Sao Paulo, Buenos Aires, Shanghai, Singapore, Mexico City, Dubai and New York.
But the question on everybody's lips: does this mean we will see Sir Martin pulling serious shapes at next year's MassiveMusic & MediaMonks party?