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Stagwell Insights

 

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Today’s businesses have more reputational capital than ever before. When reputation is managed, it has the potential to add business value and mitigate risks. Stagwell annually produces the Reputation Quotient, the industry’s leading barometer of American corporate reputation, in partnership with Axios and The Harris Poll to uncover insights which brands are gaining or losing reputational capital – and the expectations of a new generation of reputation-minded consumers.  

The Axios Harris Poll 100 is a trusted ranking of the reputations of the companies most on the minds of Americans using a framework Harris has used since 1999. Download the 22nd Annual Reputation Quotient Study report to view the full rankings and gain additional insights about performance year over year. 

Register to receive our 2022 research – set to release in late May – using this form. Reach out to hello@stagwellglobal.com if you have questions. 

Methodology:  

The Axios Harris Poll 100 is based on a survey of 42,935 Americans in a nationally representative sample. The two-step process starts fresh each year by surveying the public’s top-of-mind awareness of companies that either excel or falter in society. These 100 “most visible companies” are then rated by a second group of Americans across the seven key dimensions of reputation to determine the ranking. If a company is not on the list, it did not reach a critical level of visibility to be measured. 

 

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CONTACT

Beth Sidhu
pr@stagwellglobal.com
202-423-4414

Global Affiliate Brand New Galaxy joins the challenger marketing group to accelerate connected commerce and digital transformation for global brands; will operate as part of Stagwell Media Network

New York, NY & Warsaw, PL – April 21, 2022 (NASDAQ: STGW) – Stagwell, the challenger network built to transform marketing, today announced the acquisition of Brand New Galaxy (BNG), a leading provider of scaled commerce and marketplace solutions for 150+ global brands and 500+ e-retailers worldwide. With 600 experts across Europe, MENA, and the United States, BNG adds deep, digital-first specialization in connected commerce solutions, scaling Stagwell’s broad e-commerce capabilities to service more complex global clients. BNG has served as a partner of Stagwell via its Global Affiliate Program since 2021 and is the first acquisition Stagwell has made of one of its affiliates.

“We are pleased to welcome Brand New Galaxy to the Stagwell platform, expanding the reach of our global e-commerce offerings. Their state-of-the-art e-commerce and digital transformation technology is another reason clients are choosing Stagwell over traditional holding companies,” said Mark Penn, Chairman and CEO, Stagwell.

BNG will join the Stagwell Media Network, a global community of leading omnichannel agencies that collaborate to deliver future-facing solutions driven by digital, data, technology, and media expertise. In addition to complementing Stagwell’s data-led digital transformation capabilities, BNG offers a range of tailored solutions for accelerating end-to-end multimarket commerce, based on international insights that translate into local market opportunities.

“It is incredibly exciting to welcome Brand New Galaxy and their leadership teams to Stagwell Media Network,” said James Townsend, Global Chief Executive Officer of Stagwell Media Network and its global media agency, Assembly. “Their deep and extensive expertise in all things connected commerce sits in perfect complement to our growing portfolio of omnichannel media agencies. The addition of BNG is the natural and front-footed next step for our network to further empower the modern marketeer with more cohesive and integrated solutions across the marketing services spectrum.”

As part of Stagwell Media Network, Brand New Galaxy will continue to go to market under the BNG brand as well as collaborate with other members of the Stagwell Media Network.

Piotr Morkowski, CEO of Brand New Galaxy Holding said, “BNG was born as an ecommerce-native business and over the last five years of incredible growth, we have built a set of unique, world-class capabilities to support our global clients across the entire path to purchase. Building a global business of 600 experts in less than five years is no small achievement, but we are hungry to do much more. Joining forces with Stagwell Media Network at this stage in our journey as part of an integrated go-to-market approach is the best way for us to grow even faster and deliver on our ambitions.”

Stagwell Media Network is now home to more than 3,500 experts distributed globally across more than 20 countries and 40 offices, managing close to $5 billion in media. The Network offers omnichannel media, led by data and digital expertise that challenges the antiquated media models of legacy advertising giants. The BNG acquisition follows the January 2022  acquisition of Goodstuff Communications, one of the United Kingdom’s leading independent media agencies, supporting Stagwell’s scale and global footprint with local activation.

The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

###

About Stagwell Inc.

Stagwell is the challenger network built to transform marketing. We deliver scaled creative performance for the world’s most ambitious brands, connecting culture-moving creativity with leading-edge technology to harmonize the art and science of marketing. Led by entrepreneurs, our 10,000+ specialists in 34+ countries are unified under a single purpose: to drive effectiveness and improve business results for their clients. Join us at www.stagwellglobal.com.

About Stagwell Media Network

Stagwell’s Media Network is a group of leading omnichannel agencies home to more than 3,500 experts with an expansive global footprint across 40+ offices in 20 countries, managing close to $5 billion in media. Agencies include AssemblyBrand New Galaxy, MMI Agency, Goodstuff and Grason, creative consultancy GALE, B2B specialist Multiview, multi-lingual content agency Locaria, and travel and media experts Ink. The network offers marketers a more dynamic partner for global B2B and B2C solutions spanning data, technology, media, and creativity aimed at accelerating business growth for brands worldwide.

About Brand New Galaxy

Brand New Galaxy is a fast-growing leading provider of marketing and technology solutions built to drive commerce and digital transformation for brands. Founded in Warsaw, Poland, in 2017, BNG has grown to 600+ employees with offices in Europe, North America, and the Middle East. BNG has been named “Debut of the Year 2018”, “Success of the Year 2019 & 2020,” and “Growth of the Year 2021” by PRESS magazine’s prestigious agency ranking, proving its position as a dynamic global agency. BNG’s data-driven approach makes brands better connected with consumers in complex marketing and technology ecosystems. This gives more than 150 brands and Fortune 500 clients a true strategic partner, both on a global and local level.

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BY

Christine McDermott
VP, Veritas/Meat & Produce

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This piece is part of series on Social Commerce, Influencer Marketing, and the Creator Economy. 

A decade ago, brands looked to influencer agencies to connect with the ‘who’s who’; today, they come to us to wield the transformative power of social influence through their entire marketing stack. As part of the agency that felt so strongly about the term “influencing the influencers” that we trademarked it, I am keenly aware that influencer marketing long predates the current hype that social media has generated around the industry. When we look at the prioritization of influencer marketing in today’s marketing mix, it’s no longer considered a nice to have but rather a core component of brand planning.

It wasn’t always this way, though. This has provided a fascinating opportunity to watch the shift in the marketplace from a client service perspective. In today’s creator-centric economy, brands require influencer marketing agency partners to keep apace the transformation in this space.

From Impressions to Engagement

In the days of blogs and burgeoning social media channels, the most significant opportunity influencers afforded was the chance to reach new audiences. The focus was almost exclusively on maximizing the number of impressions from influencer content. Guaranteed organic reach and high blog readership provided cost-effective ways for brands to reach audiences that otherwise may never have interacted with them. The deep relationships that influencer marketing agencies held with influencers were critical to obtaining the best earned and paid opportunities for our brand partners and allowed for agility in influencer placements.

As social channels moved into the spotlight, accounting for more media hours consumed across generations, the focus shifted to engagement. The goal was to measure the attention content could generate through authentic connection with audiences in an increasingly competitive digital world. With this, we saw the rise of micro and nano influencers who built strong relationships through two-way communication with their audiences, maintaining consistently high engagement. Trusted recommendations from the right influencers could bring your brand into the consideration set for your target audience. Dedicated audiences of nano influencers also provided an opportunity to access niche consumer segments that otherwise would be challenging for brands to find. Our key to success was pairing the right influencers with our brands, ensuring alignment on values and demographics. 

The Creator Economy

Today, getting the right message to the right person at the right time has never been more critical – or more difficult as the consumer ecosystem becomes increasingly sophisticated. New channels and content formats provide evermore opportunities to attract and engage new and existing audiences with relevant content. Moving influencer marketing from a single tactic to a full-funnel approach creates a new world of opportunity for brands, while at the same time raising countless new considerations. With all these factors to contend with, the role influencer marketing agencies take on has never been more critical. Today’s influencer marketing agency partners must help clients navigate this ever-changing world by:

  • Going beyond the numbers: As data-driven marketers, it can be attractive to make decisions based solely on the immense data we now have at our fingertips. While these are fundamental parts of our discovery and vetting processes, we believe it’s equally important to review the qualitative elements of an influencer agreement: alignment with brand values, the types of social conversations creators drive among their followings, and, importantly, any content or connections that may increase brand risk.
  • Capitalizing on available technology: Today’s digital tools provide capabilities that aid every step of the process: diving deep into audience demographics, reviewing years of content to ensure brand safety, authenticating audiences to remove bot traffic, and analyzing results. The available options can also be overwhelming. Here, the right mix of talent (agency experts with a deep understanding of the landscape) with technology (digital SaaS and DaaS tools) can supercharge campaign results. 
  • Keeping human connection at the center: True influence is built on strong connections between agencies and influencers and influencers and their audiences. Authentic connection is essential, from the relationships we build to the content we create. 
  • Letting creators be creative: Our influencers are partners in the creative process, not simply another outlet or a channel to distribute brand messages. Influencers know their audiences better than anyone. Leaning into their insights and creativity will lead to more authentic content and experiences that resonate. True partnerships with influencers allow for co-creation and collaborations that can excite and convert. 
  • Researching and reviewing: Due to the steady growth of influencer marketing, we now have a wealth of research to help inform and guide everything from partnership models to accurate approaches for optimizing reach. Every campaign is an opportunity to test, learn, and then review performance to better optimize results in the future.

There has been a tremendous acceleration in influencer marketing growth and investment. When done well, it works. When we examine the transformation of influencer marketing and the creator economy in just a few short years, it becomes clear that more evolution is to come. Leaning on agency partners with deep knowledge of the discipline, facility with the technology tools driving efficiency through the space, and authentic relationships with influencers will help brands get the most out of this fast-moving space.

 

 

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Dyversity joins Doner Partners Network to meaningfully expand multicultural marketing services spanning advertising, research & analytics, shopper, content production, media, XM, Influencer and PR

TORONTO, April 1, 2022 – Stagwell (NASDAQ: STGW) today announced the acquisition of Dyversity Communications, a leading multicultural full-service marketing agency in depth, breadth, and size based in Canada.  Dyversity specializes in Chinese and South Asian communications, with additional expertise in over 20 other languages including Filipino, Korean, Portuguese, and Spanish.

The acquisition rapidly scales the Doner Partners Network’s multicultural capabilities across its Canadian assets – namely DonerNorth, Veritas, and Meat & Produce (M&P) – by adding best practices for existing clients and doubling down on more progressive ways to centralize multicultural insights and expertise as part of the offering. The Doner Partners Network (DPN) is one of four integrated networks within Stagwell that bridge complementary specialist marketing services for powerful collaborations across client work.

“I am so honoured to welcome Dyversity into our Network and learn from their expertise,” says Krista Webster, Vice-Chair of DPN and President & CEO of Veritas Communications and M&P.  “Dyversity’s team were pioneers in spearheading growth in the burgeoning ethnic markets in Canada, at a time when few considered it.  Now, they are the leader in one of the fastest growing segments in North America. As a challenger network with offices all over the world united by a mission to transform marketing, it only makes sense for Stagwell to bring Dyversity into the mix.”

Dyversity has a storied history in Canada with over two decades of award-winning work servicing all sectors from banking and telecommunications to consumer-packaged goods and real estate. With over 30 experts, Dyversity provides clients 360-degree marketing services, including strategy, creative, research & analytics, and traditional and digital media.

As part of the Doner Partners Network, Dyversity Founder Albert Yue, will continue leading the agency as CEO and focus on setting the pace for multicultural marketing in Canada with the added support of a best-in-class global network. 

“I am so proud of growing Dyversity into Canada’s largest and longest standing ethnic marketing agency, but that still accounts for a very modest number of Canadian brands’ total marketing spend,” says Yue.  “I knew when I met Krista and the Stagwell team that we could take this agency to an even more special place together. With their wind in our sails, this will be a game changer for cultural marketing overall.”

“As the Industry continues to demand more diversity in communications, it wasn’t going to be satisfactory to me to ‘lip service’ our promise to clients with temporary solutions,” added Webster.  “We needed a true change agent embedded in our network and Dyversity was the best fit in terms of caliber of clients and agency culture.”

In collaboration with other award-winning Stagwell agencies within Canada like DonerNorth and Veritas, Dyversity is well-positioned to drive multicultural marketing success as a key feature for the country’s leading blue-chip brands. Additionally, the agency will now benefit from Stagwell’s engineering and technology talent, numbering over 1200 worldwide, as well as original SaaS and DaaS products supporting marketing transformation within the Stagwell Marketing Cloud.

“We’re eager to welcome Dyversity to Stagwell as we continue to evolve our offering of transformational marketing services,” added Mark Penn, Chairman and CEO, Stagwell. “Dyversity sets a high bar for excellence in multicultural insights that aligns with our data-driven approach to shaping culture through the work we do for brands.”

Once Dyversity establishes itself within DPN Canada, Webster says the opportunity to scale expertise into the US through Doner and the Stagwell global network is on the horizon.   

About Doner Partners Network. Doner Partners Network is a mix of award-winning US, Canadian and UK based B2C and B2B marketing agencies within Stagwell that are the best-in-class in the cities they originate – from Toronto to LA, New York to London, Detroit to Minneapolis. Agencies include Doner, DonerNorth, Yamamoto, Veritas, Meat & Produce and KWT Global. 

About Stagwell
Stagwell is the challenger network built to transform marketing. We deliver scaled creative performance for the world’s most ambitious brands, connecting culture-moving creativity with leading-edge technology to harmonize the art and science of marketing.  Led by entrepreneurs, our 10,000+ specialists in 34+ countries are unified under a single purpose: to drive effectiveness and improve business results for their clients. Join us at www.stagwellglobal.com.

For more information, please contact:

Brandon Dixon
347-636-5807
pr@stagwellglobal.com                              

Bora Caglayan              
647-920-2201
caglayan@veritasinc.com 

 

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By

Olivia Morley
Adweek

FEATURING

Via Adweek, Stagwell, Getty Images.

Today Stagwell Inc. announced record full-year 2021 financial results and growth in the fourth quarter.

Stagwell’s total revenue in the fourth quarter was $611.9 million, up 95.5% from the same period last year. Its full-year 2021 revenue was nearly $1.5 billion, up 65.5% compared to the previous year. Fourth quarter net revenue reached $519.7 million, an increase of 160.9% versus the prior period, while the company’s full-year net revenue of almost $1.3 billion is an increase of 100.4% compared to last year. The company’s pro forma organic net revenue was up 11.3% in the fourth quarter and 14.5% for the year.

Stagwell merged with MDC Partners in August 2021. The pro forma revenue calculation assumes that the company solidified its merger with MDC at the beginning of 2021, instead of in August 2021. Today’s earnings announcement is the company’s second as a combined entity.

“Today’s results demonstrate that the merger is not only working, but is working even better and faster than expected,” said Stagwell chairman and CEO Mark Penn in a call with analysts.

Three key factors, the leader said, propel the business forward: its high concentration of digital capabilities, its scale in new markets through recent acquisitions and its focus on flexibility, integration and collaboration.

 

1,200 engineers

The company’s digital business grew its net revenue 29%, excluding its advocacy businesses, which are tied to the election cycle. Of the company’s net revenue, 51% came from digital capabilities. This is reflected in its work with blue-chip brands like Home Depot and Chipotle. Stagwell brands Code and Theory, YML and Targeted Victory manage much of the digital work, and the company employs 1,200 engineers across the globe, with presences in the U.S., India, Argentina and the Philippines.

A digital-first mentality led Stagwell to develop an SaaS offering for its clients coined The Stagwell Marketing Cloud. Its products include a new augmented reality technology for use at live sporting events, and the company is also building out a full technology stack. The cloud is the company’s novel solution to in-housing. By licensing its technology to clients, the holding company can play an active role in supporting in-housing operations and remain relevant as fewer companies seek external services.

Consolidation is king

The holding company’s agency brands include 72andSunny, Assembly, MMI, Anomaly, Doner, Code and Theory, GALE, YML, Crispin Porter Bogusky and more. It’s on an acquisition spree, and this year it acquired U.K agency Goodstuff and the remaining 49% of digital agency Instrument. It now has over 10,000 employees in over 34 countries and counts over 4,000 companies as clients.

Its been consolidating its subsidiaries, recently merging sister agencies Assembly and ForwardPMX, along with MMI and Media Kitchen.

Consolidation creates scale, and according to Penn, it’s behind the recent success. “Right away, I think we’re in much larger pitches and I think we’re seeing much stronger outcomes there,” he said.

The company’s net new business wins totaled $75 million in the fourth quarter with several accounts over $10 million. Its big accounts include Dunkin’, MilkPEP, H&R Block and Pollstar.

“These are great wins, in both the diversity of services and different verticals of business,” Penn told Adweek. New business wins in the third quarter totaled about $65 million.

Scaling up

On a call with analysts this morning, Penn announced that Stagwell’s operations in Russia, supported by 10 employees, would shut down. He worries about international conditions related to the war in Ukraine, he told Adweek. “I do think the world has a way of working things out,” he added. “Let’s hope that happens.”

Amidst the international turmoil, the holding company is focused on achieving global scale. Its acquisition of Goodstuff expanded its presence in the U.K. and the company plans to expand its portfolio.

“We have some good acquisitions in the pipeline and we achieved our 50 affiliate goal,” he added, referencing Stagwell’s global affiliate network.

Penn feels the market views Stagwell as a wholly different enterprise now, especially as it is achieving large-scale success.

“I started this about six years ago from zero. I started it to focus on building out digital-first services. That approach is the differentiating approach. I think they didn’t know what to make of us until the merger closed.” said Penn. “They realized we’re a $2 billion platform with over 10,000 people and diversified across every essential marketing service.”

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Record first full-year financial results as Stagwell Inc. were fueled by fast growing digital transformation and digital marketing services, expansion of global media and large client wins.

Earnings: The Movie

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Originally released on

FEATURING

Record first full-year financial results at Stagwell Inc. were fueled by fast growing digital transformation and digital marketing services, expansion of global media and large client wins 

  • GAAP Revenue growth of 95.5% in 4Q and 65.5% for the Full-Year

  • Pro Forma Organic Net Revenue growth of 11.3% in 4Q and 14.5% for the Full-Year

  • Ex-Advocacy Pro Forma Organic Net Revenue growth of 21.2% in 4Q and 18.0% for the Full-Year

  • Net Income attributable to Stagwell of $0.8M in 4Q and Net Income of $21.0M for the Full-Year

  • Pro Forma Adjusted EBITDA of $103.6M in 4Q and $378.0M for the Full-Year

  • Issues 2022 Pro Forma Net Revenue growth guidance of 18%-22% and 13%-17% ex-Advocacy

  • Issues 2022 Adjusted EBITDA guidance of $450M – $480M and Pro Forma Free Cash Flow growth of ~30%

New York, NY, March 8, 2022 (NASDAQ: STGW) – Stagwell Inc. (“Stagwell”) today announced financial results for the three and twelve months ended December 31, 2021.

REPORTED FOURTH QUARTER & YTD HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Fourth quarter revenue of $611.9 million, an increase of 95.5% versus the prior year period; full-year revenue of $1,469.4 million, an increase of 65.5% versus a year ago.
  • Fourth quarter net revenue of $519.7 million, an increase of 160.9% versus the prior period; full-year net revenue of $1,268.9 million, an increase of 100.4% versus a year ago.
  • Fourth quarter net income attributable to Stagwell Inc. common shareholders of $0.8 million versus net income of $22.2 million in the prior year period; full-year net income of $21.0 million versus $56.4 million in the prior year period.
  • Fourth quarter adjusted EBITDA of $103.6 million, an increase of 61.3% versus the prior year period; full-year adjusted EBITDA of $253.7 million an increase of 2% versus a year ago.

PRO FORMA FOURTH QUARTER & YTD STAGWELL INC. HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Fourth quarter Pro Forma revenue of $611.9 million, a decline of 4.6% versus the prior year period and an increase of 18.0% ex-Advocacy; full-year Pro Forma revenue of $2,224.3 million, an increase of 6.6% and an increase of 18.2% ex-Advocacy versus the prior year period.
  • Fourth quarter Pro Forma net revenue of $519.7 million, an increase of 10.4% and 20.2% ex-Advocacy vs. a year ago; full-year Pro Forma net revenue of $1,926.8 million, an increase of 16.4% and 20.0% ex-Advocacy versus the prior year period.
  • Fourth quarter Pro Forma organic net revenue increased 11.3% and 21.2% ex-Advocacy versus a year ago; full-year Pro Forma organic net revenue increased 14.5% and 18.0% ex-Advocacy versus a year ago.
  • Fourth quarter Pro Forma adjusted EBITDA was $103.6 million, a decrease of 5.1% versus the prior year period and an increase of 31.2% ex-Advocacy; full-year Pro Forma adjusted EBITDA was $378.0 million, an increase of 19.6% versus the prior year period and an increase of 41.4% ex-Advocacy.
  • Fourth quarter Pro Forma adjusted EBITDA margin was 19.9% of net revenue and full-year adjusted EBITDA margin was 19.6% of net revenue.
  • Net New Business wins totaled $75 million in the fourth quarter.

“2021 was a breakthrough year for Stagwell. Our full-year results and 2022 outlook are a clear affirmation of the combination and Stagwell’s unique position as the challenger that will transform marketing,” said Mark Penn, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “We delivered pro forma organic net revenue growth of 14.5% for the year and an even more impressive 18% organic growth when excluding our Advocacy businesses, which lapped the 2020 election cycle.”

“Our record year was driven by tailwinds across our high concentration of leading digital capabilities, including digital transformation, influencer and global performance marketing; as well as a rapid acceleration in large contract wins,” Penn continued. “Our robust 2022 outlook reflects our expectation for continued digital strength; continued acceleration in scaled, integrated contract wins; and significant growth in the second-half in our Advocacy businesses driven by an anticipated record year of spend during the 2022 U.S. mid-term elections.”

Frank Lanuto, Chief Financial Officer, commented: “The Company reported strong fourth quarter net revenue of $520 million, representing pro forma net revenue growth of 10.4% year-over-year with 11.3% organic growth.  Strong operating performance led to pro forma adjusted EBITDA margins of 19.9% for the quarter. Effective cash flow management permitted our continued acquisitions of both minority interests in our fastest growing subsidiaries as well as the acquisition of Goodstuff in the UK while lowering our net leverage ratio from the prior quarter.”

Financial Outlook

2022 financial guidance is as follows:

  • Pro Forma Net Revenue growth of 18% – 22%
  • Pro Forma Net Revenue growth ex-Advocacy of 13% – 17%
  • Adjusted EBITDA of $450 million – $480 million
  • Pro Forma Free Cash Flow growth of approximately 30%
  • Guidance assumes no impact from foreign exchange or acquisitions or dispositions.

* The Company has excluded a quantitative reconciliation with respect to the Company’s 2022 guidance under the “unreasonable efforts” exception in Item 10(e)(1)(i)(B) of Regulation S-K. See “Non-GAAP Financial Measures” below for additional information.

 

Webcast

Management will host a video webcast on Tuesday, March 8, 2022, at 8:30 a.m. (ET) to discuss results for Stagwell Inc. for the three and twelve months ended December 31, 2021. The video webcast will be accessible at https://stagwellq4andfullyear2021earnings.open-exchange.net. An investor presentation has been posted on our website at www.stagwellglobal.com/investors and may be referred to during the conference call.

A recording of the conference call will be accessible one hour after the call and available for ninety days at www.stagwellglobal.com.

About Stagwell Inc.

Stagwell is the challenger network built to transform marketing. We deliver scaled creative performance for the world’s most ambitious brands, connecting culture-moving creativity with leading-edge technology to harmonize the art and science of marketing.  Led by entrepreneurs, our 10,000+ specialists in 34+ countries are unified under a single purpose: to drive effectiveness and improve business results for their clients. Join us at www.stagwellglobal.com.

Basis of Presentation

The acquisition of MDC Partners (MDC) by Stagwell Marketing Group (SMG) was completed on August 2, 2021. The results of MDC are included within the Statement of Operations for the period beginning on the date of the acquisition through the end of the respective period presented and the results of SMG are included for the entire period presented.

Non-GAAP Financial Measures

In addition to its reported results, Stagwell Inc has included in this earnings release certain financial results that the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) defines as “non-GAAP Financial Measures.”  Management believes that such non-GAAP financial measures, when read in conjunction with the Company’s reported results, can provide useful supplemental information for investors analyzing period to period comparisons of the Company’s results. Such non-GAAP financial measures include the following:

Pro Forma Results: The Pro Forma amounts presented for each period were prepared by combining the historical standalone statements of operations for each of legacy MDC and SMG. The unaudited pro forma results are provided for illustrative purposes only and do not purport to represent what the actual consolidated results of operations or consolidated financial condition would have been had the combination actually occurred on the date indicated, nor do they purport to project the future consolidated results of operations or consolidated financial condition for any future period or as of any future date. The Company has excluded a quantitative reconciliation of adjusted Pro Forma EBITDA to net income under the “unreasonable efforts” exception in Item 10(e)(1)(i)(B) of Regulation S-K.

(1) Organic Revenue: “Organic revenue growth” and “organic revenue decline” refer to the positive or negative results, respectively, of subtracting both the foreign exchange and acquisition (disposition) components from total revenue growth. The acquisition (disposition) component is calculated by aggregating prior period revenue for any acquired businesses, less the prior period revenue of any businesses that were disposed of during the current period. The organic revenue growth (decline) component reflects the constant currency impact of (a) the change in revenue of the partner firms that the Company has held throughout each of the comparable periods presented, and (b) “non-GAAP acquisitions (dispositions), net”. Non-GAAP acquisitions (dispositions), net consists of (i) for acquisitions during the current year, the revenue effect from such acquisition as if the acquisition had been owned during the equivalent period in the prior year and (ii) for acquisitions during the previous year, the revenue effect from such acquisitions as if they had been owned during that entire year (or same period as the current reportable period), taking into account their respective pre-acquisition revenues for the applicable periods, and (iii) for dispositions, the revenue effect from such disposition as if they had been disposed of during the equivalent period in the prior year.

(2) Net New Business: Estimate of annualized revenue for new wins less annualized revenue for losses incurred in the period.

(3) Adjusted EBITDA: defined as Net income excluding non-operating income or expense to achieve operating income, plus depreciation and amortization, stock-based compensation, deferred acquisition consideration adjustments, and other items. Other items include restructuring costs, acquisition-related expenses, and non-recurring items.

(4) Free Cash Flow:  defined as Adjusted EBITDA less capital expenditures, change in net working capital, cash taxes, interest, and distributions to minority interests, but excludes contingent M&A payments.

(5) Financial Guidance:  The Company provides guidance on a non-GAAP basis as it cannot predict certain elements which are included in reported GAAP results.

Included in this earnings release are tables reconciling reported Stagwell Inc. results to arrive at certain of these non-GAAP financial measures.

This press release contains forward-looking statements. Statements in this press release that are not historical facts, including without limitation the information under the heading “Financial Outlook” and statements about the Company’s beliefs and expectations, earnings (loss) guidance, recent business and economic trends, potential acquisitions, and estimates of amounts for redeemable noncontrolling interests and deferred acquisition consideration, constitute forward-looking statements. Words such as “estimates”, “expects”, “contemplates”, “will”, “anticipates”, “projects”, “plans”, “intends”, “believes”, “forecasts”, “may”, “should”, and variations of such words or similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements. These statements are based on current plans, estimates and projections, and are subject to change based on a number of factors, including those outlined in this section.  Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made, and the Company undertakes no obligation to update publicly any of them in light of new information or future events, if any.

Some of the factors that could materially and adversely affect our business, financial condition, results of operations and cash flows include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • risks associated with international, national and regional unfavorable economic conditions that could affect the Company or its clients, including as a result of the novel coronavirus pandemic (“COVID-19”);
  • the effects of the outbreak of COVID-19, including the measures to reduce its spread, and the impact on the economy and demand for our services, which may precipitate or exacerbate other risks and uncertainties;
  • an inability to realize expected benefits of the combination of the Company’s business with the business of MDC (the “Business Combination” and, together with the related transactions, the “Transactions”);
  • adverse tax consequences in connection with the Transactions for the Company, its operations and its shareholders, that may differ from the expectations of the Company, including that future changes in tax law, potential increases to corporate tax rates in the United States and disagreements with the tax authorities on the Company’s determination of value and computations of its attributes may result in increased tax costs;
  • the occurrence of material Canadian federal income tax (including material “emigration tax”) as a result of the Transactions;
  • direct or indirect costs associated with the Transactions, which could be greater than expected;
  • risks associated with severe effects of international, national and regional economic conditions;
  • the Company’s ability to attract new clients and retain existing clients;
  • reduction in client spending and changes in client advertising, marketing and corporate communications requirements;
  • financial failure of the Company’s clients;
  • the Company’s ability to retain and attract key employees;
  • the Company’s ability to achieve the full amount of its stated cost saving initiatives;
  • the Company’s implementation of strategic initiatives;
  • the Company’s ability to remain in compliance with its debt agreements and the Company’s ability to finance its contingent payment obligations when due and payable, including but not limited to those relating to redeemable noncontrolling interests and deferred acquisition consideration;
  • the successful completion and integration of acquisitions which complement and expand the Company’s business capabilities; and
  • foreign currency fluctuations.

Investors should carefully consider these risk factors, other risk factors described herein, and the additional risk factors outlined in more detail in Exhibit 99.2 to our Current Report on Form 8-K, filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) on August 10, 2021, and accessible on the SEC’s website at www.sec.gov., under the caption “Risk Factors,” and in the Company’s other SEC filings.

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We’re proud to share several ways agencies across Stagwell have celebrated and used Black History Month this year as a platform to impact communities locally, nationally, and across the digital ecosystem.

Instrument – BankBlackUSA – Closing the Racial Wealth Gap

Instrument has invested $3 million in their Build|Grow|Serve program, created to support and empower Black and systemically excluded communities. As part of their 2021 Pro-Bono program, they partnered with  BankBlackUSA – an independent, grassroots organization dedicated to promoting financial advocacy in Black communities and closing the racial wealth gap – to redesign their website, elevate their brand, and create an extensible platform that supports the brand’s movement through impactful storytelling.

In emphasizing the need for banking Black, they felt it important to support Black designers and makers in the process. In doing so, they created infographics inspired by the work of W.E.B. DuBois—a famed sociologist who created groundbreaking data visualizations on institutionalized racism—purchased a typeface from designer Tré Seals, and supported Black-owned photography sites to bring the brand to life.

Applications for their 2022 pro-bono partner are live now through March 25th.You can further explore the Bank Black Case Study here.

Allison+Partners – NYC Black History 50 Run – Illuminating Hidden Histories

Allison+Partners’ ultra-runner Todd Aydelotte collaborated with several community partners across New York to organize the NYC Black History 50 run, an interactive running experience across key moments and sights integral to understanding black history across New York City. The run bridged an exciting interactive experience and local history, linking the boroughs together, beginning in South Staten Island and ending at the Ralph Ellison Memorial in Harlem. All participants donated to a Go Fund Me to preserve the history of Sandy Ground, America’s oldest continuously inhabited free Black community.

In a blog, Aydelotte discusses what inspired this run: (The Stream)

72andSunny and Colle McVoy – Spotlighting Black Hair and Culture 

In two separate activations, 72andSunny and Colle McVoy prepared creative content to celebrate Black hair and educate people on the rich styles, traditions, and historical significance of hairstyles in the Black community.

In an owned social series, Colle McVoy explored the history, significance, misconceptions, and beauty of hairstyles in the Black Community, covering cornrows, headwraps, and the afro. Colle McVoy’s Inclusion Council’s Black History Month planning team researched and developed the effort and shared it on social and with internal talent.

72andSunny launched “Rooted: A Journey of Roots and Resistance,” which packaged an expansive palette of digital assets, including a curated playlist, alphabet lookbook spotlighting hairstyles that have defined Black culture through history, a film showcasing stories of 72andSunny team members on hair journeys of self-discovery and acceptance, and a panel featuring some of the Black hair industry’s most exemplary people. Sequaña Williams-Hechavarria, equity, diversity, and inclusion program manager at the agency, spoke with The Drum about the work.

Code and Theory – Snapchat Creative Council “Hey, You Good?” – Driving Awareness on Black Mental Health 

My-Linh Tran, Senior Inclusive Marketing Strategist at Code and Theory, was part of the team of creatives who developed the Snapchat Creative Council’s Black History Month campaign devised to educate Snapchatters through real conversations about the mental health issues impacting Black communities. The campaign features AR filters and lenses that users can leverage, a Discover Channel mini-series that encourages young people to check in on mental health, and an educative microsite. Snapchat’s Creative Council is a partnership with ADCOLOR which brings together leading creatives to build campaigns that tackle issues that disproportionately impact Black communities.

Learn more about the effort in Adweek.

Doner/ Doner Partners Network – Kaleidoscope – Vendor Diversity Fair

Doner hosted its inaugural virtual supplier/vendor diversity fair, Kaleidoscope, which convened over 150+ diverse suppliers and vendors to showcase offerings and share best practices around equitable sourcing. Agencies across the Stagwell network attended and contributed to the programming.

OTHER NOTABLE ACTIVATIONS

  • Anomaly Toronto – Equal Advantage – Anomaly recently opened applications for the second year of Equal Advantage, an agency-wide initiative to support small businesses in BIPOC communities with great advertising. A pro-bono effort, Equal Advantage offers Anomaly’s world-class creativity, strategy, and marketing experts to small businesses free of charge. In the program’s first year, Anomaly partnered with ISARELLA KOBLA, a luxury made-to-order clothing and accessories brand, as its first client.
  • KWT Global – Do the Work Microsite – KWT continued to add to its expansive microsite launched in 2020, which features original and curated content that elevates BIPOC Creators, stories, and experiences. This month, KWT curated three pieces of content: The Story of Black History Month21 Books by Black Authors You Should Read in Your Lifetime; and Black History Month Films to Watch.
  • The Harris Poll partnered with Teva Pharmaceuticals and the Morehouse School of Medicine on a report on the State of Access to Healthcare in America. Among the insights, the team identified barriers top barriers to health access exacerbated by the pandemic and offered strategies for a #PathToEquity
  • YML BLK – YML’s black employee resource group curated stories of black perseverance, black history, black futures, and black joy in a social series through the month. Additionally, the agency spotlighted individual members of the ERG.
  • Multiview – Helping Associations that Serve BIPOC Professionals – Stagwell’s B2B digital media and marketing firm has several partnerships with associations that represent minority professionals in different industries. The firm’s sales services help those organizations fund some of their member programs. Additionally, Multiview publishes their newsletters and helps them monetize various media properties by connecting their industry sponsors and their members through advertising.

 

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Originally released on

Campaign Asia

by Robert Sawatzky

CONTACT

Beth Sidhu

FEATURING

Stagwell, the US-based marketing holding company, is making good on its recent pledge to grow in Asia-Pacific through its global affiliate programme with a new partnership deal reached with Southeast Asian online news publisher Coconuts Media. Under the affiliate partnership deal, there is no immediate monetary investment. Rather, Stagwell and Coconuts will collaborate on scaled media placement and distribution across the Coconuts network in Southeast Asia. In addition, Stagwell’s agencies, such as 72andSunny, Forsman & Bodenfors, Allison and Partners, Assembly, Ink and others can team up with Coconuts’ in-house marketing agency, Grove, on joint pitches, marketing campaigns and branded content. Revenue sharing will be split on a project by project basis depending on what is involved.

Coconuts Media, founded by journalist entrepreneur Byron Perry in 2011, has grown steadily over the past decade, publishing online news and lifestyle content to millions across eight local markets (Bali, Bangkok, Hong Kong, Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur, Manila, Singapore, Yangon) including documentaries and videos for major streaming services and networks like Discovery and Netflix. 

“We’re eager to collaborate with Byron and the Coconuts Media team to offer our leading mix of digital and media services to strengthen the APAC offering for our clients,” says Stagwell’s chairman and CEO, Mark Penn. “With the opening of Stagwell’s first-ever APAC headquarters in Singapore and our agencies’ continued success in the region, we’re investing heavily in Asia-Pacific as part of our global expansion this year.”

In November, Stagwell announced its SVP of executive talent, Randy Duax, would lead the APAC office as managing director starting this month to drive “rapid growth” and expansion. The Coconuts partnership is among the first of these regional efforts from its new regional base. Duax tells Campaign Asia-Pacific the two sides were mutually attracted, with Coconuts already having been on his radar for many years before connecting through the affiliate programme. 

“We’re super excited about Coconuts,” Duax says. “For us, they’re in a lot of different markets, they’re deep into social commerce, they’ve got first-party data. It fills in a lot of gaps that some clients have been looking for in this part of the world. And they’re very collaborative, which is something we look for.” 

While it’s less common for news-media publishers to join hands with a single advertising holding company, the deal should allow Coconuts to tap into Stagwell’s media services and research resources and give the company access to a global client base it may not have had before. The latter could be particularly important as Grove, Coconuts’ in-house creative studio for brands, becomes an increasingly important focus for the company.  

“With our publishing roots as a foundation, we are growing our creative and media-buying services and the business of serving clients as a modern creative agency,” says Perry, the company’s CEO. “Partnering with a challenger marketing network like Stagwell makes total sense as we work with larger, more complex global clients.”

Affiliate versus acquisition

What is significant about these affiliate deals is that they’re designed to be the first step on the road to a mutual acquisition agreement. This is something Stagwell made very clear when first announcing its affiliate programme a year ago. 

“It’s a way to soft introduce [Coconuts] to the holding company,” Duax explains. “We’re not taking ownership, we’re not saying you have to move into this office location. For an entrepreneur, if you want to retain control, that’s the appeal.”

Since it launched a year ago, Stagwell has signed up nearly 50 affiliates, including others in APAC such as Metric Design Studio in China, Enormous in India, This is Flow in Australia, and Hong Kong-based Beyond Media Global. 

Making the distinction of how these affiliate deals represent a very different approach from “top-down, holding-company acqusitions”, Duax explains the programme is designed for entrepreneurs looking for global opportunities to bring their own local opportunities and resources in return without the pressure of being forced to work for global clients and projects that they don’t want to.

Similar to the Worldwide Partners network of purely independent agencies, Stagwell’s affiliate collective is a network of successful entrepreneurs and businesses that want bigger opportunities. “You’ve got creative agencies in some of these markets who maybe have never had a media or research component,” Daux explains. “Maybe they have a client that just needs to reach into one specific market and they don’t have that connection. But they don’t [yet] want to sell to a bigger holding company. So for us it’s an opportunity to see if the partnership works out and if they can execute some of the bigger pieces of business we could bring.“  

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Originally released on

Strategy

by Justin Crann

CONTACT

Beth Sidhu

FEATURING
ARound aims to help brands turn augmented reality from an individual to a communal experience.

At CES this week, holding company Stagwell debuted a new augmented reality technology it believes will provide a low-barrier entry for many brands and marketers into the metaverse.

The technology, called ARound, is a platform that eschews the often highly individualized AR experience and instead seeks to open it up, allowing venues and retailers to create attractions in the virtual space for their live events, better capturing guests’ attention, personalizing their experiences and increasing brand engagement.

“The purpose of ARound is to change augmented reality from something you do alone in a room with a headset into something you can do as a shared experience, because we believe the most effective experiences for brands, marketers and advertisers are those that are experiential, persistent and shared,” explains Beth Lester Sidhu, chief brand and communications officer with Stagwell.

The technology allows venues, retailers, and others with large spaces that would typically see plenty of traffic to capture that space, build an AR version of it, and then layer different experiences – such as games, direct purchasing, and other interactive elements – on top of it.

As an example, Sidhu cites the MLB mascot race, which typically involves a limited number of participants on an actual baseball field between innings. Rather than being limited to physical space and a small number of participants, teams – including an unnamed franchise which is already employing the ARound platform – can open the experience up to many more participants. H&M was also among the retailers involved in a test conducted last year.

While the applications for the platform are “tremendous,” says Sidhu, “there’s a lot of education.”

“Clients are interested in the product and how they can use it,” she explains. “Marketers want to be at the forefront of what is interesting to consumers, and consumers are excited about AR. But it is hard for most brands to figure out how to play in the space.”

While ARound isn’t a turnkey solution, it is “a scalable way for brands to interact with AR with relative ease and without spending millions of dollars.”

“The power of ARound is in connecting our physical spaces with AR. If we bring those two things together, we can create amazing opportunities for brands, consumers and marketers – really, anybody who wants to be at the forefront,” says Sidhu.

ARound is part of the broader Stagwell Marketing Cloud, which was fully unveiled at CES this year. A suite of integrated SaaS products, it also includes Harris Brand Platform, which provides daily insights on KPIs like brand perception, equity, sales funnels and the impact of marketing campaigns on customer behavior and perceptions; Koalifyed, an end-to-end influencer marketing application; and PRophet, a PR application that uses AI to predict media interest, sentiment and spread of a press story prior to pitching.

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