Courting Done, SapientNitro, La Comunidad To Make 'Beautiful Babies Together'

Digital shop SapientNitro, part of the Sapient Corporation, has acquired Miami-based multicultural agency La Comunidad.

SapientNitro executives declined to confirm terms of the deal, but the Financial Times reports that the agency paid between $40 million and $50 million.

"We are the future of storytelling and make advertisements that build worlds that co-exist with people, not consumers," says Gaston Legorburu, worldwide chief creative officer, SapientNitro. "La Comunidad adds another dimension . . . Yes, consumers are highly connected and mobile, but they are also culturally diverse. [La Comunidad] as a cross-cultural agency is the best on the planet. We joke that we are two great-looking agencies that are going to make beautiful babies together." 

The multicultural agency will be fully integrated into SapientNitro but will retain its La Comunidad branding, an agency rep said.  Agency founders Jose and Joaquin Molia will remain in charge of their nearly 100 employees, with SapientNitro's Legorburu serving as an "executive sponsor," he says. "My job is to make them successful. This deal just puts them on steroids. They will have full access to our people, tools and know-how."

La Comunidad will keep its brand name and clients, which include Corona, MTV and Virgin Mobile. "They have a committed vision and clearly know what to do," says Legorburu. That said, the two shops will collaborate on various efforts. "They will go to the market to get their own clients, we'll bring business to them, and there will be situations to do things together," says Legorburu. 

International opportunity is partly responsible for bringing these two companies together. SapientNitro operates in 31 cities, and recently opened up an office in Brazil. With this acquisition, SapientNitro gains access to La Comunidad's Buenos Aires presence. "Clients have been begging us to have a footprint in Latin America, so while it isn't the reason this deal happened, it might be reason number two, three, or four. It's clearly beneficial," says Legorburu.

But there is also some overlap with offices. SapientNitro has two offices in Miami, and La Comunidad also has an office there. For now, each company will retain separate locations.

Parent company Sapient’s 2012 revenue was $1.1 billion. SapientNitro revenue was $771.9 million, 69% of Sapient’s total revenue, an agency rep confirmed. As a privately held company, La Comunidad has not disclosed its financial results. 

Corrections have been made to this story.

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