Combined operations rank among top U.K. and European consultancies
MONTREAL and LONDON, April 3, 2019 – AVENIR GLOBAL, a Montreal-based holding and management company of public relations and communications firms, today announced that it has acquired Hanover, a top 10 independent U.K. public relations consultancy with offices in London, Brussels, Dublin, Dubai and Abu Dhabi.
With the acquisition of Hanover, AVENIR GLOBAL consists of 1,000 employees in 25 locations across North America, Europe and the Middle East. Its annualized revenue of £125M should place the firm in the top 15 worldwide public relations agency ranking.
This transaction is part of a strategic plan to build a global powerhouse of specialist communications firms delivering outstanding value to clients. Together with the November 2018 acquisition of London-based healthcare creative agency, Cherry, the deal significantly enhances AVENIR GLOBAL’s EMEA offering. The group was already represented in the region by healthcare communications firm AXON Communications, with offices in London, Copenhagen, Zug, Brighton, New York and Toronto, and by its strategic communications consultancy Madano Partnership.
“We are building a powerful network of colleagues who are the best in their field and our goal is to provide our clients with bold thinking founded on research, insights and deep sector expertise. Hanover is hugely respected as one of the best and fastest growing agencies in the world and this transaction showcases our ambitions. In addition to an enhanced geographic footprint, there is a strong cultural alignment, which is critical to our teams working well together,” said Ralph Sutton, International Managing Partner of AVENIR GLOBAL.
“Hanover focuses on communications and public affairs disciplines which are key to our network, in addition to deep sectoral expertise in healthcare, financial services, technology, media, energy, fast-moving consumer goods, industrials and sport. The combined business in the U.K. places us among the country’s largest public relations consultancies; second in public affairs and first in healthcare.”
The Hanover executive committee with AVENIR GLOBAL’s International Managing Partner Ralph Sutton. (Left to right) back row: Jonty Summers, Michael Prescott, Katie Blower, Christian Hierholzer, Ian Chapman, Claire Sherry (Left to right) front row: Lorna Jennings, Andrew Harrison, Charles Lewington, Ralph Sutton, Gavin Megaw, Laura Roberts (Photo credit: Paolo Ferla)
Founded in London in 1998 by CEO Charles Lewington, Hanover is one of Europe’s leading strategic communications and public affairs consultancies with 163 employees, advising global companies on building recognition and enhancing reputation. Clients include Goldman Sachs, Airbus, Microsoft, Apple, Warner Media, Sky, Lucozade Ribena Suntory, Premier League, Tata Steel, Lilly, Novartis, BMS, Roche and Takeda. The Hanover Group also includes creative communications agency The Playbook, and Multiple, a brand and culture consultancy that enables technology challengers and corporate change-makers to define their purpose, fire up their people and build platforms for growth. The agency’s leadership team will remain in place following the transaction.
AVENIR GLOBAL has 300 healthcare communications staff harnessing expertise in public relations, reputation management, crisis and issues management, medical communications, clinical trial support, marketing communications, public affairs, market access and internal communications. The firm works for many of the largest names in the pharmaceutical and medical device industries as well as working with healthcare providers, technology firms and patient advocacy organisations.
Other sectors where the combined group will have particular strength on both sides of the Atlantic include food and drink, energy and financial services, and the communications disciplines of reputation management, public affairs and issues and crisis management.
“AVENIR GLOBAL provided a strong business case for joining forces to create an unrivalled worldwide team of specialist communications firms. We share a common belief in building a high degree of client service and expertise,” said Charles Lewington.
“By joining the AVENIR GLOBAL network, we broaden our offering in insights and research, add impressive resources in creative and digital campaigning and execution, and can draw on additional scientific expertise in healthcare, food and drink, and energy. Our international clients also now have access to a strong presence in North America which will help us meet their international communications objectives.”
The Fonds de solidarité FTQ and Bank of Montreal provided the cross border financing for the transaction.
AVENIR GLOBAL’s senior leadership team, from left: Andrew Molson, Chairman; Valérie Beauregard, Executive Vice President; Jean-Pierre Vasseur, President and CEO; Royal Poulin, Executive Vice President (Photo credit: Sandrine Castellan)
ABOUT AVENIR GLOBAL
AVENIR GLOBAL is a Montreal-based holding and management company with an active operations mindset and a hands-on approach to all its investments. A global powerhouse of specialist communications firms, AVENIR GLOBAL has 1,000 staff and offices in 25 locations across Canada, the U.S., Europe and the Middle East, and ranks among the top 15 largest communication firms in the world.
In Canada, AVENIR GLOBAL owns NATIONAL Public Relations, the country’s leading public relations firm, servicing clients across a wide range of sectors, which includes NATIONAL Capital Markets, the industry’s foremost investor relations and financial services practice. In the United States, AVENIR GLOBAL owns SHIFT Communications, a data-driven integrated communications agency; and the public relations and communication company Padilla, which includes the brand consultancy Joe Smith, the food and nutrition experts at FoodMinds and the research authorities at SMS Research Advisors. In Europe, AVENIR GLOBAL owns the London-based strategic communications consultancy Madano and Hanover, one of the EMEA’s leading strategic communications and public affairs consultancies, with offices in London, Brussels, Dublin, Dubai and Abu Dhabi. Hanover Group also includes creative communications agency The Playbook, and the brand and culture consultancy Multiple. The AVENIR GLOBAL network also includes healthcare specialists AXON Communications, with offices in Toronto, the U.S, the U.K. and Europe and healthcare creative agency Cherry, based in London.
AVENIR GLOBAL is owned by RES PUBLICA Consulting Group.
Hanover is one of Europe’s leading strategic communications and public affairs consultancies, with offices in London, Brussels, Dublin, Dubai and Abu Dhabi. Hanover Group also includes creative communications agency The Playbook, and Multiple, a brand and culture consultancy that enables technology challengers and corporate change-makers to define their purpose, fire up their people and build platforms for growth.
Hanover Group has 163 full-time employees across Europe and 2018 revenue of £19m. It has delivered consistent 25% top-line growth over the past four years, and plans to double the size of the company by 2022.
Hanover provides a full suite of communications services to clients in healthcare, financial services, technology, media, energy, FMCG, industrial, and sport. Its blue-chip client list includes Goldman Sachs, Airbus, Microsoft, Warner Media, Sky, Lilly, Lucozade Ribena Suntory, Tata Steel, Novartis, BMS, Roche, and Takeda.
Hanover is now an AVENIR GLOBAL company.