WPP AUNZ accelerates its transformation in WA with Meerkats acquisition and merger with Wunderman Thompson
WPP AUNZ has officially confirmed its acquisition of Meerkats, as part of the company’s strategy to boost client capabilities announced earlier this year.
As part of the agreement Meerkats will merge with Wunderman Thompson in WA, building the brand’s Perth capability to more than 50 employees and creating a specific Experience & Innovation Practice. As a result, Wunderman Thompson Perth will now offer the full suite of brand and organisational strategy, consulting, innovation and technology capabilities underpinned by creativity, further strengthening the WPP AUNZ Perth Campus.
Says WPP AUNZ CEO Jens Monsees: “With an impressive roster of clients, and a platform of transformational strategy, EX/CX and technology-led innovation, Meerkats brings experience, skills and growth opportunities to our WA business. While our clients face increasing challenges to engage with their audiences in the current environment, this acquisition will allow us to provide even stronger capability to the Perth market.”
The merged Wunderman Thompson and Meerkats team will operate under the Wunderman Thompson brand from its Subiaco office. Its leadership team will comprise former Meerkats CEO Gavin Bain (pictured far right) as Wunderman Thompson Perth Managing Partner, Doni Savvides (far left) as Partner, Martin Beecroft (centre right) as Chief Innovation Officer, and Melanie Wiese as Chief Strategy Officer, Perth.
Says Bain: “The Meerkats business model has evolved in recent years in line with our clients changing needs. We feel that the fresh Wunderman Thompson creative innovation approach is the perfect fit for our expanded strategic offering alongside WPP AUNZ’s focus on providing new offerings. We’re confident that our combined strengths will build something truly unique in this market and offer great opportunities for our people.”
Adds Savvides: “Gavin and his team share Wunderman Thompson’s ambition and passion to help our clients succeed and we’re delighted to be joining forces to bring that potential to life. Adding their skillset and capabilities to our already strong brand adds significant firepower to what we can deliver to our clients and to building a truly world class Wunderman Thompson offering in Western Australia. I am excited about what the future holds.”
As part of the acquisition, Meerkats’ founders Ronnie Duncan and Mike Edmonds are leaving the company. Having moved to non-executive roles a couple of years ago, both feel this merger is the ideal moment to formally separate from the company they founded and leave the management to Bain and his leadership team. While not retiring, the pair say their interests now lie outside of the marketing industry.