Dentsu Network, the U.S. agency division of Japanese agency holding company Dentsu, has acquired Mitchell Communications Group, a public relations agency based in Fayetteville, Ark. It is not affiliated with Mitchell Communications, the Australian media services agency acquired by Aegis Group in 2010, but it will likely end up being part of Aegis’ portfolio anyway, following Dentsu’s acquisition of Aegis later this year.
According to executives familiar with the merger discussions, Dentsu’s U.S. agency operations are likely to operate under Aegis once Dentsu’s acquisition of the London-based agency holding company is completed.
Dentsu Network, meanwhile, said the acquisition of Mitchell Communications signals its diversification into the PR industry and an intent to “build a global public relations network.” PR and marketing communications services have been ascendant on Madison Avenue, and have been buoyed by the broader shift toward social media, blurring the role between conventional media services shops and PR agencies.
“By acquiring Mitchell Communications, we intend to build out a full-service offering to benefit Dentsu clients globally that now includes public relations,” stated Tim Andree, CEO of Dentsu Network, which includes shops such as mcgarrybowen, 360i, Firstborn, Steak, Taproot, &c. and Media Palette.