Scottish PR firms Clark and Golley Slater to merge

Clark Communications was founded by Lesley Brydon in 2012. Picture: Contributed
Clark Communications was founded by Lesley Brydon in 2012. Picture: Contributed
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Edinburgh-based public relations agency Clark Communications has struck a deal to buy the Scottish operation of rival Golley Slater.

The combined business, employing seven people across its offices in Edinburgh and Glasgow, is to trade under the banner of Clark Communications, which was set up in 2012 by managing director Lesley Brydon. No value was disclosed for the acquisition.

Brydon said the alliance with Golley Slater Group will allow its UK clients to retain access to services in Scotland, while Clark’s clients will be able to connect with regional services and specialist disciplines across the UK and overseas.

“By merging two agencies with slightly different offerings, we benefit not only from scale, but also depth of experience,” Brydon said today.

“As the boundaries between the different creative disciplines continue to blur, the diverse mix of talent we have created will serve our combined clients as their needs develop and it will boost our engagement with their audiences.”

She added: “Whether we are grounded in advertising, design, social, marketing or PR, the team are all communicators at heart, and that blend of backgrounds creates an exciting road ahead. Clients will experience, above all, consistency of service levels and account handling, but beyond that they will be able to take advantage of enhanced expertise across fully integrated services.”

Clark’s clients include the Institute of Directors and accountant Scott-Moncrieff, which advised on the financial aspects of the deal alongside MacDonald Henderson Solicitors. The enlarged business will offer a range of public relations and media relations, crisis and issues management, strategic and internal communications, digital and social, design and advertising services to existing and new clients.

Golley Slater first established a presence in Scotland in 2005. Current clients include shortbread maker Paterson Arran and the People’s Postcode Lottery, alongside a number of public sector bodies.

Angela Hughes, previously an account director with Golley Slater Scotland, will become associate director at Clark, with responsibility for leading its Glasgow office.

Managing director Christina Kelly is to leave the business, having handed in her notice before the deal was struck, and is currently working on the handover to Clark.

Golley Slater Group chief executive David Longden said: “Following the news of Christina Kelly’s departure, we considered a number of options in relation to the future of our Scottish business.

“We were inspired by Clark Communications’ ambition and vision and felt that Lesley was the right person to take the business in a new direction. We look forward to working with Clark Communications over the coming years.”

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