County Down advertising and marketing agency Ardmore has bought a Belfast digital marketing specialist for an undisclosed sum to service the growing demand for ecommerce.
Built for Growth Digital (BFG Digital), formerly known as Export Technologies, has a range of high-profile clients across the UK and Ireland and has been in operation since 2000.
It said it has generated sales of £1.5 billion for its client base , which includes Ann’s Cottage, Camping World, Newbridge Silverware and DV8 Fashion, since then.
BFG Digital, which is based at Catalyst innovation hub in Belfast, has a headcount of 20 staff and represents the latest addition to Ardmore which itself has around 60 at its Holywood base.
Ardmore said the takeover will help it capitalise on the growing demand for ecommerce solutions as more businesses look to online to reach a customer base which is increasingly remote.
Ardmore managing director, Mark Irwin, said he had been impressed by BFG Digital.
“BFG Digital has powered its way to growth for over two decades, driving international sales success for clients hungry for rocket-fuelled online growth, greater profits and retained customer loyalty,” he said. “Combining our marketing communications expertise and the eCommerce know-how and experience provided by BFG Digital delivers a truly exceptional platform to create and grow high performance eCommerce businesses.
BFG Digital is run by co-heads of consultancy and services Leanne Blair and Andrew McComb.
“This ground-breaking acquisition, which is a first-of-its-kind industry development in Northern Ireland, means that we can combine our skills to become the leading agency to provide industry-leading services and expertise in brand building, advertising and eCommerce,” Lesley said.
The two companies will also be able to partner with another Catalyst tenant, IRP Commerce, which provides an ecommerce platform.
IRP Commerce chief commercial officer Philip Macartney welcomed the deal.
“IRP is delighted that agency partner BFG Digital has been acquired by Ardmore Advertising. Ardmore is a global, award-winning, results-focused, marketing communications industry leader. This is a decisive step forward for the whole IRP ecosystem and the agency model.”
Ardmore represents a range of clients including Network Rail, Stena Line, Lidl, Dale Farm, Phoenix Natural Gas, Power NI, Translink, Progressive Building Society, Destination British Columbia and National Trust.