Ex-Grammar school student’s digital marketing agency announces merger

Simon Penson, MD at Zazzle.
Simon Penson, MD at Zazzle.

A digital marketing agency headed by a former Boston Grammar School student has announced a merger that will create one of the largest independent digital agencies in the UK.

Market Deeping-based Zazzle Media has merged with award-winning digital marketing agency Stickyeyes, based in Leeds and London.

Craig Chalmers, of Stickyeyes.

Craig Chalmers, of Stickyeyes.

The acquisition will create an independent group with three offices, 140 staff and anticipated operating profits for 2015/16 in excess of £3.5 million.

Speaking about the news, Zazzle MD and ex-Boston Grammar School pupil Simon Penson, said: “It’s a great cultural fit. By joining Stickyeyes, not only will our existing client base have access to some of the most advanced digital insight, data and marketing capabilities in the industry but it will also help us compete and deliver campaigns on a much greater scale.

“Zazzle’s long term plan has always focused on being able to offer our cutting edge content strategies to the very biggest brands in the world. By combining with Stickyeyes we get to fast track that vision and also plug in years of data experience to push our offering. Working within the enlarged Group also creates even more opportunity for our most talented people. We’re very excited about the future and we’re immediately hiring, so we want to hear from talented digital brains locally to join the story!”

Stickyeyes CEO Craig Chalmers will head up the group with Simon joining the Stickyeyes’ executive team. Both agencies will retain their individual brands and trade independently initially, but expect to collaborate on larger international projects.

Craig said: “Stickyeyes has always had significant strength in using technology and data to inform our digital strategies for clients and, in combining this depth of data with our collective pedigree in content strategy, production and distribution we’re creating a ‘game-changing’ service offering.

“We already work with brands across 17 countries, but the deal will ensure we’re even better placed to service international brands working in highly competitive multiple territories. We’ve always prided ourselves on being flexible to client needs and this acquisition is a confident statement of intent for Stickyeyes and an important milestone in the next stage of our development.”

Zazzle Media was established in 2009 and its 40-strong team services clients including eBay, AO.com and Mecca Bingo from its London and Peterborough offices. Turnover for 2014/15 was £2.5m.

Stickyeyes was founded in 1996. Its team of 100 work with international brands, including Staples, Hertz and ghd in 17 countries across the world. Turnover for 2014/15 was £11m.