WPP's Cohn & Wolfe Acquires Majority Stake in Brazil's Grupo Maquina

Major move establishes significant presence in Latin American market

Jan 18, 2016, 06:00 ET from Cohn & Wolfe

NEW YORK, Jan. 18, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Cohn & Wolfe, a leading communications agency, today announced that it has acquired a majority stake in Grupo Maquina, one of Brazil's largest and most widely respected public relations agencies. Maquina Cohn & Wolfe, with 240 employees across offices in Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and Brasilia, has the combined talent and experience to meet demand for global integrated marketing services from Brazilian companies and multinational companies alike. 

Maquina was founded in 1995 by Maristela Mafei, an award-winning entrepreneur and one of the country's top female business leaders. Today, Maquina is known for its digital and integrated communications work across numerous industries, including finance, education, consumer technology, retail, entertainment, government and tourism. The agency has specialty divisions focused on digital, video content, branding, advertising and package design services.

"Latin America has become a very important region for our clients and Brazil is a critical market for Cohn & Wolfe. After working with many good agencies, we were most impressed with Maquina's excellence in digital and integrated marketing," says Donna Imperato, Chief Executive Officer, Cohn & Wolfe.  "They have an impressive client base and an equally impressive leadership team. We share values, including creativity, entrepreneurship and focus on client service, which will ensure a strong and long-lasting partnership and joint success." 

Mafei will remain Director-General of Maquina Cohn & Wolfe, reporting to Imperato. Marcelo Diego and Daniella Camargos will continue in their roles as Co-CEOs, reporting to Mafei. They will keep their positions as partners with Maquina Cohn & Wolfe.

Named Best PR Agency in Brazil four times at the prestigious Comunique-se Awards, Maquina was the first Brazilian PR agency to sign the UN Global Compact Initiative and is the only public relations agency that belongs to Endeavor, an international organization that supports entrepreneurship.  The agency's extensive roster of both public and private sector clients includes Credit Suisse, EY, Zara, Xerox, Carrefour, L'Oréal, Nextel, MetLife, Bridgestone, GP Investments, Embratur, BRMalls, Qualicorp, Hypermarcas, Raízen, BRF, Grupo Estacio, Insper and Gafisa. Máquina also works with the entrepreneur Jorge Paulo Lemann and the companies and foundations attached to him in Brazil, including Kraft Heinz, 3G Capital, AmBev, B2W/Lojas Americanas, São Carlos, Lemann Foundation, Estudar Foundation and Endeavor.

"We recently celebrated our 20th anniversary and I couldn't be more proud of the accomplishments of our remarkable teams and the work they have done for our trusted clients," says Mafei. "What I envision for our next 20 years can be achieved by becoming part of the Cohn & Wolfe family. This partnership will bring unmatched strengths globally that will benefit our current multinational clients and attract many more here and throughout Latin America. We will continue to provide the best of our culture, but will now be associated with one of the largest agencies in the world."

This is the second recent acquisition by Cohn & Wolfe, which agreed to acquire a majority stake in India's Six Degrees PR and Alphabet Consulting in September. Cohn & Wolfe has delivered double-digit global growth in 2014 and 2015 and, in the past year, was named Large PR Firm of the Year (PRNews), Best Large Place to Work (Holmes, PRWeek) and Southeast Asia Agency of the Year (Holmes).

About Cohn & Wolfe

Cohn & Wolfe, a global communications agency, builds brands and corporate reputations through an uncompromising commitment to creativity. The agency's strategic approach unearths fresh, relevant insights leading to communications solutions that deliver measurable business success. Over its 45-year history, Cohn & Wolfe's brand marketing work and world-class digital media campaigns have attracted top brands around the world, winning awards at the Cannes Health Lions, the Global SABREs and the Global PRWeek Awards. With a creative network of more than 1,200 employees in over 50 offices across North America, EMEA and Asia, the agency has been named a Best Place to Work by The Holmes Report, PRWeek and PRNews. Cohn & Wolfe is part of WPP (Nasdaq:  WPPGY), the world's largest communications services group.  

 

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