McMurry and TMG Custom Media, two content marketing companies, have merged to create the nation’s largest independent full-service content marketing agency. The Wicks Group of Companies has taken a majority ownership stake in the new company, which will be called McMurry/TMG. On a combined basis, McMurry/TMG has annual revenues of approximately $100 million.
Content marketing is original content created and distributed by a brand (either in-house or through a third party). Unlike brand advertising, it is not overtly promotional and is designed to engage, rather than disrupt, the audience. Content marketing is disseminated through both print and digital media.
“This is a tremendous combination of talent and industry presence that we believe creates the largest and best positioned content marketing agency in the United States, if not the world,” said Dan Kortick, managing partner of The Wicks Group. “We are very proud to have brought these two visionary firms together with this transaction and are delighted to add them to our portfolio of sector leaders. Growth prospects for this corner of the marketing industry are very bright. We are confident that the management team in place at McMurry/TMG is well equipped to take advantage of the growing demand for content marketing.”
McMurry is a content marketing company that serves 150 of the Fortune 500. The company helps brands in a variety of industries achieve business outcomes through the effective, multichannel use of content and services such as content strategy, content creation and content distribution. The company was founded in 1984 and has nearly 200 employees. McMurry has offices in New York and Phoenix (www.mcmurry.com).
TMG is a developer of content marketing strategies that utilize magazines, e-newsletters, websites, videos, white papers and social media. The company’s clients include major corporations, trade and professional associations, healthcare organizations, nonprofits and educational institutions. The company was founded in 1981 and is headquartered in Washington, DC, with an additional office in New York (www.tmgcustommedia.com).
Matt Petersen, formerly TMG Custom Media’s president, has been named the combined company’s CEO, and Fred Petrovsky, who had been McMurry’s president, is its COO. Keith Sedlak, who was senior vice president, client partnerships, at TMG, has been named chief revenue officer. Chris McMurry, former CEO of McMurry, and Jane Ottenberg and Richard Creighton, founders of TMG, retain a minority interest in the combined company and will continue to be involved.
“The joining of these two financially strong, growing and award-winning companies instantly positions McMurry/TMG as a content marketing industry heavyweight,” said Mr. Petersen. “Content is the new marketing currency and its importance continues to grow. Marketers are harnessing content’s ability to reach and engage key constituencies in a measurable way across a spectrum of online and offline platforms – from magazines and other content platforms to every type of digital, video, mobile, search and social media experience. The combined capabilities of these two long-time leaders in the field will be a compelling proposition to existing and potential clients.”
AMR International acted as a strategic advisor to The Wicks Group of Companies on the transaction. AMR International is a strategy consultancy with offices in New York, London, Frankfurt, Paris and São Paulo. AMR specializes in B2B media and advises corporate and private equity clients on growth strategy and transaction support. “AMR did a fantastic job. They combined strong industry knowledge with a rigorous approach which yielded some very important insights to our investment process. We would recommend them whole-heartedly,” said Thomas Kearney, Principal, Wicks Group of Companies.
McMurry and TMG were represented by The Jordan, Edmiston Group (www.jegi.com), a New York-based investment bank that specializes in the media, information, marketing services and technology industries.
The Wicks Group of Companies invests in lower-middle-market companies operating in select segments of the information, education and media industries principally in the United States and Canada. Since its founding in 1989, Wicks has invested over $1 billion of capital in 28 platform companies and approximately 100 add-on acquisitions. The firm is based in New York (www.wicksgroup.com).
© 2013 PEPD • Private Equity’s Leading News Magazine • 2-6-13