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PR Pitches and M&A update: January 2023

Welcome to the PRmoment Podcast.

Welcome to our January review of PR Pitches and mergers & acquisitions in the UK PR scene with Andrew Bloch.

Andrew is a co-founder and non-executive director at Frank PR and is now Head of PR at the new business consultancy firm AAR. He is also a partner at PCB Partners where he advises on buying and selling marketing services agencies.

Before we start the final entry deadline for the PRmoment Awards is on 27th January - check out for all the info you need, including downloading this year’s updated entry form.

Finally thanks to our PRmoment Podcast sponsors, The PRCA.

Here’s a summary of what Andrew and PRmoment podcast host Ben Smith discussed on the show:

2 mins Andrew gives us his rundown of this month's biggest pitch wins in UK PR, including:

  • Premier PR and the Booker Prize
  • Organic and The Apprentice (with a shout-out to Taylor Herring’s long-term work with the Apprentice.)
  • Splendid and Flock win the Ginster's brief
  • MHP and The Royal Mint (again with a shout-out to Hope&Glory’s work on the account over the last 10 years)
  • H&K Strategies and Hills Pet Nutrition
  • Capture PR win Gala and Foxy Bingo
  • Praytell and Sonus

“The average decision-making period for a decent size pitch is about 6 months.”

“A real lesson for me was that…the period between the pitch and the decision is so critical - show your hunger and determination.”

“It was a 30 agency pitch…that is a huge amount of agencies. You have to be respectful of agencies time… it's all about the size of the prize at the end.”

“Making sure the (pitch) process is fit for purpose, respectful and informed”

12 mins A discussion about whether the trend of clients consolidating the number of agencies they use will continue.

13 mins Pitch wise “this is the busiest January I can ever remember.” Andrew talks us through why there is so much new business activity in the PR market at the moment.

15 mins A discussion about the Tulchan Teneo deal - which saw Teneo acquire UK financial PR specialist Tulchan in a reported £65m deal.

“Teneo gives Tulchan an international footprint.”

16 mins Andrew talks us through how the Tulchan deal is likely to be structured and how the ratio of profit to revenue is important in a valuation of a business.

“Tulchan is obviously a very, very well run company.”

“We’re seeing consolidation, the importance of scale and building a global footprint”

“The right time to sell is not when you’ve reached your peak, it’s when you feel you’ve got great growth.”

21 mins We chat about Penta’s acquisition of Dublin-based corporate PR firm Hume Brophy.

“For Penta, this deal gives them global reach”

24 mins Andrew predicts that 2023 could have a lot of trade deals in the M&A space.

“There are a lot of big trade organisations and holding groups which are sitting on piles of cash and they need to spend it…to keep their share prices high (acquisitions will bring them growth.)”

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