M&C Saatchi acquires stake in talent agency Merlin Elite

M&C Saatchi Group has acquired a 60 per cent stake in the talent management agency Merlin Elite for an undisclosed sum.

M&C Saatchi Merlin: (l-r) Martin, Thomas and Thompson
M&C Saatchi Merlin: (l-r) Martin, Thomas and Thompson

Merlin, which manages a client roster including Jamie and Louise Redknapp, Andrew Flintoff, Matt Dawson and Jodie Kidd, will be renamed M&C Saatchi Merlin and move into M&C Saatchi’s Golden Square office in London.

The new acquisition will sit within M&C Saatchi Sport & Entertainment but will remain a standalone agency.

Founded ten years ago by Richard Thompson, Merlin Elite has ten staff, who will make the transition to the new agency. Thompson will become the chairman of the shop and report to Lisa Thomas, the group chief executive of M&C Saatchi, and Steve Martin, the global chief executive of M&C Saatchi Sport Entertainment.

Thompson, Thomas and Martin will all sit on the M&C Saatchi Merlin board, along with Merlin Elite’s managing director, Sian Connolly, and M&C Saatchi’s financial director, Jamie Hewitt. M&C Saatchi’s acquisition will strengthen its Sport & Entertainment arm after it expanded its own management talent offering last year by signing the boxer Amir Khan.

Martin said: "We are joining forces with Merlin Elite to develop new revenue streams, build valuable intellectual property and harness some of the best talent in the country."

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