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Merkle Acquires Comet Global Consulting, a Leading Provider of Decision Management Solutions

March 2, 2016
Columbia, MD

Merkle (merkleinc.com), a leading technology-enabled, data-driven performance marketing agency, announced its acquisition of Comet Global Consulting (www.cometgc.com), a leading global provider of inbound and outbound CRM, marketing, and real-time decision management solutions that enable companies to reach customers at moments that most influence their decisions and behaviors. The acquisition is designed to expand Merkle’s global offering and meet the growing international needs of its client base.

This is the third and largest European acquisition in less than a year, and the first with an established global footprint. It follows the 2015 acquisition of Periscopix (periscopix.co.uk), a leading London-based performance marketing and programmatic agency and, most recently, the acquisition of DBG (dbg.co.uk), a UK-based marketing solutions agency. The addition of Comet not only increases Merkle’s global scale, it also strengthens the agency’s offering, both in the US and Europe, bringing enhanced real-time decisioning capabilities and partner alliances.

Launched in 2006, Comet specializes in delivering high-impact strategy, technical consulting, and ongoing development and operational support services for global brands. The company drives the growth and profitability of large enterprises by enabling them to interact with their customers in real time and with greater relevancy. Through powerful partnerships with CRM software providers, such as Pegasystems, IBM, and SAS, Comet implements advanced marketing automation and customer decisioning capabilities for its clients.

Comet’s expertise in the telecommunications, financial services, retail, travel, and media industries is a strategic match to Merkle’s vertical go-to-market approach. The company boasts an impressive roster of international clients, both shared and unique, that includes brands such as Telefonica O2, Royal Bank of Scotland, Standard Life, EE, Fifth Third Bank, DIRECTV, and Sky. Comet’s team of more than 300 experts, led by Group Managing Director, Sam Taverner, UK Managing Director, Iain Levein, and US Managing Director, Paul Skinner, are located across the United Kingdom, United States, and Spain. They will join Merkle’s Marketing Solutions Group, bringing Merkle’s total number of European employees to more than 500 and more than 3,400 worldwide.

“We are proud to welcome Comet to the Merkle family, as we continue to build our global brand,” said David Williams, Merkle’s chairman and CEO. “As a real-time decision management leader in both the US and Europe, Comet’s strategic offering, geographical presence, and impressive multi-national client roster are the perfect fit to bolster our offering and solidify our position as a global leader in performance marketing.”

“Merkle is a great fit for us,” said Taverner.  “They are tech-savvy digital marketers who understand the importance of what Comet does – helping large enterprises build relevant and valuable interactions with their customers. We are very excited about the new capabilities our combined organizations are going to be able to offer our clients.”

Skinner added, “This is great news for our US-based clients as well, giving us the support of and access to Merkle’s incredible bench strength in everything we do.”

“In Merkle’s mission to build our global people-based marketing competencies, Comet stood out in a number of ways, not the least of which was its superior decision management expertise. The company is a leader in the use of data to inform the next-best action for an exceptional customer experience,” added Tim Berry, President of Merkle Europe. “The cultural similarities between our two companies were another significant factor in our assessment, as we welcome Comet’s entire staff of smart, dedicated employees and impressive management team.” 

About Merkle

Merkle is a leading data-driven, technology-enabled, global performance marketing agency that specializes in the delivery of unique, personalized customer experiences across platforms and devices. For more than 30 years, Fortune 1000 companies and leading nonprofit organizations have partnered with Merkle to maximize the value of their customer portfolios. The agency’s heritage in data, technology, and analytics forms the foundation for its unmatched skills in understanding consumer insights that drive people-based marketing strategies. Its combined strengths in performance media, customer experience, customer relationship management, loyalty, and enterprise marketing technology drive improved marketing results and competitive advantage. With 7,000 employees, Merkle is headquartered in Columbia, Maryland, with 21 additional offices in the US and 33 offices in Europe and APAC. In 2016, the agency joined the Dentsu Aegis Network. For more information, contact Merkle at 1-877-9-Merkle or visit www.merkle.com.

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