McKinsey & Co, the global management consultancy, has acquired Envision, the branding consultancy based in Chicago.
McKinsey is merging its marketing practice with Envision in a move to increase its strength in customer loyalty, brand consultancy, customer relationship management and research - areas in which it competes with advertising agencies for business.
In a confidential letter to clients, leaked to Campaign, Eric Arnson, a principal at the McKinsey/Envision Branding Practice, says:
'We have joined forces with the Marketing Practice at McKinsey & Co. Our combined entity will operate as McKinsey/Envision Branding Practice ... we were impressed with their senior client level relationships ... they valued our track record and our blend of logic with creative magic.'
Envision will move into McKinsey's Chicago office but will operate out of its HQ for the next five months. The merger will be completed by 1 February.
Envision and McKinsey have worked together on projects for shared clients for several years. Envision has created a brand development system that McKinsey is keen to offer. The company says that it will offer 'a fact-based yet creatively inspired approach.'