Holding group Porta Communications has acquired planning specialist PPS Group and will merge the consultancy with Newgate Communications.
The purchase is reportedly worth £6.2m split between cash and shares, with a three-year earn-out. PPS has 45 staff across London, Manchester, Bristol, Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Cardiff.
PPS MD Stephen Byfield will become head of Newgate’s public affairs practice in London and Brussels working with Newgate’s managing partner, Deborah Saw. The new business will employ 82 people in the UK.
PPS MD Stephen Byfield said: “PPS has been independent for nearly 25 years. We have achieved great things in that time but an injection of fresh capital and thinking is just what we need to foster our growth and innovation.”
Porta chief executive David Wright said: “It has always been our strategy to build by way of acquisition particularly in areas where we see opportunities for faster growth. PPS has a proven track record in community engagement, coalition building and stakeholder communications which will combine well with Newgate’s corporate reputation management approach.”