Leading global creator commerce company Whalar announced today its first acquisition. Whalar has acquired C Talent, a disabled-led, award-winning talent management and consultancy company that represents high-profile Deaf and Disabled talent.
C Talent solely represents high-profile creators, actors, directors, and writers, and works to place Deaf and Disabled talent into all roles, not just disability-specific roles – normalising disabled people being experts in subjects beyond disability. C Talent has placed talent in thousands of projects with companies and brands such as Savage X Fenty, Hulu, About-Face, Twitter, Disney, Google Pixel, Subaru, Nike, and many more. Additionally, C Talent’s global disability and accessibility consultancy department is helping companies progress their accessibility and disability efforts, most recently working on Sony’s 3000 Pictures and Netflix’s upcoming film ‘Lady Chatterley’s Lover’. C Talent also worked on and are founding members of #WeThe15 – the Emmy nominated campaign aimed to transform the lives of the one billion disabled people globally.
C Talent will become a specialised unit under Whalar, concentrating on disability inclusion, accessibility beyond compliance, and helping break societal stigmas and stereotypes. C Talent Founder and CEO Keely Cat-Wells will now serve as founder and president of the C Talent unit under Whalar. In this new role, Keely will continue to increase disability representation in front and behind the camera. She will oversee a team consulting with today’s leading brands and continue to represent world-class Deaf and Disabled talent. She will report directly to Rob Horler, CEO, Whalar.
On acquiring C Talent, Whalar CEO Rob Horler said: “At Whalar, we are committed to liberating all creative voices and helping brands connect with their audiences by working directly with the communities they most want to reach. Diversity and social change are already embedded in our organisation and by bringing C Talent into the Whalar family allows us to expand our capabilities, learn and adopt best practices that go beyond meeting mandated accessibility requirements. I’m delighted to welcome Keely and the C Talent team to Whalar as we begin this journey of shifting mindsets and moving the creator economy forward.”
Together, Whalar and C Talent will set new company-wide standards for industry progress, including:
- Whalar will adopt and promote the Social Model and Disability Justice approach and, where appropriate, the Cultural Model of Deafness, recognizing that Deaf & Disabled people are disabled by barriers in society, not by their disability/medical condition.
- Whalar will strive to incorporate beyond complaint accessibility practices into all systems and procedures, alongside championing adaptive and Universal Design.
- Whalar will use its unique position within the media, advertising, and entertainment industries to promote equity, quality & authentic representation of Deaf & Disabled people across society, moving away from overused, stereotypical content.
- Whalar will invest time and resources into developing leading Deaf & Disabled talent both from a corporate and creative perspective, alongside meaningful employment opportunities.
- Whalar will conduct a business audit to identify how many Deaf & Disabled people are represented within the company and set appropriate goals and targets for increased representation based on the findings.
- Whalar will create and launch an accessible, beyond-compliant website.
On joining Whalar, Keely Cat-Wells said: “Whalar is powering the creator economy and by joining forces allows us to take our mission to the next level by amplifying Deaf & Disabled voices like never before. As a disabled entrepreneur, I have constantly been up against the incorrect and negative stereotypes that disability requires charity or is something that ‘needs to be fixed’, but this acquisition and alignment of goals showcases the business case for disability inclusion, high-quality representation, and accessibility. This proves that disability inclusion is a smart business decision; this is a significant milestone and recognizes the economic value of disabled talent. I am proud to be working with a team investing in accessible spaces and diverse narratives driven by lived experience.”
This acquisition is aligned with Whalar’s overall business growth strategy. C Talent will also be part of the recently launched Whalar for Good – the first dedicated company-sponsored philanthropic organization for the creator economy. Whalar for Good is a global initiative that unleashes the creator economy's power to deliver philanthropic support, execution, and expertise. It is designed to harness the power of the creator community by encouraging positive social change through strategic partnerships with creators, brands, and leading social platforms.