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    WPP adds Miami-headquartered PR agency JeffreyGroup to Hill+Knowlton Strategies

    With JeffreyGroup’s offices across Mexico and Brazil, the deal makes H+K the largest PR and comms agency in Latin America.

    British holding company WPP has announced the acquisition of JeffreyGroup, a corporate comms, public affairs and marketing consultancy based in Miami.

    The company numbers 330 staff across offices in Mexico City, Brasilia, Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo and Buenos Aires. Combining those outposts with H+K’s own network in Latin America will create the largest comms agency in the region, WPP’s Mark Read said.

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    He added: “Latin America continues to be an important growth market for our clients, and JeffreyGroup will strengthen our established presence in the region and bring deep-rooted experience of delivering tailored communications strategies that resonate with audiences.”

    Home to several emerging markets, Latin America is an increasingly important region to companies such as WPP. In July, it boosted its presence in the area with the acquisition of e-commerce agency CoreBiz; competitors Publicis, Media.Monks, Droga5 and Stagwell each have significant presences there, alongside thousands of WPP staff.

    AnnaMaria DeSalva, global chairman and chief executive of H+K, said: “Latin America is one of the most dynamic communication markets today, offering a growing scope of talent and innovation. Our combination with JeffreyGroup creates step change opportunities and I’m excited about what we’ll be able to achieve together.”

    The agency’s clients include Disney’s resorts arm, Johnson & Johnson, Marriott International, TikTok, Bayer, BlackRock, Amazon and SalesForce.

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    Founder and chairman of JeffreyGroup, Jeffrey Sharlach, said the firm’s status in the Latin American region “has been due in large part to our ability to evolve and adapt in a dynamic region of the world with diverse conditions, customs and cultures.

    “Joining forces with WPP and Hill+Knowlton is an exciting step forward in this evolution and opens up a world of resources for our clients and opportunities for our hundreds of employees.”

    PR and comms is an area of expanding interest for WPP. The company recorded a “strong demand” for strategic comms in its interim results this year, with a 27% net revenue increase in the first six months of 2022. That demand was one of the factors behind the merger of Finsbury Glover Hering and Sard Verbinnen in October.

    Read added that “WPP’s public relations and communications services have never been more in-demand. Our clients want agile partners who can help them navigate today’s complex world and create the right spaces to tell their stories.”

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