MRM Bolsters Custom Publishing Through New Buys

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MRM Partners Worldwide, the customer relationship management arm of advertising agency McCann-Erickson WorldGroup, has bought TPD, London, and its Seattle sibling, Fluent Communications, in an effort to bolster its custom publishing business.


Both acquired firms will function as independent units of The Publishing Agency International, MRM's custom publishing and branded content network.


Terms of the sale were not disclosed.


"What this effectively means is that MRM has five publishing agencies in five cities -- London, Madrid, Amsterdam, Seattle and New York," said Simon Kelly, president of Fluent.


With this acquisition, The Publishing Agency will have 300 executives in those cities and projected billings this year of more than $120 million. The Publishing Agency produces branded content to increase customer loyalty and retention for clients.


In 2000, The Publishing Agency bought the Netherlands' vdBJ Communications Group, followed by Reporter, a Spanish custom publisher.


The acquisition of Fluent gives The Publishing Agency more depth in online custom publishing. Fluent integrates online, print and e-mail messages into a single communication program. Clients include Microsoft Corp. and The Spiegel Group.


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