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Dentsu Aegis acquires live events firm Branded to combat ‘heavy disruption in brand building’

Dentsu Aegis Network has spoken of the need to reach live audiences after announcing the acquisition of Asia Pacific events production company Branded for an undisclosed sum.

Branded, which has offices in Singapore and Hong Kong and connects brands, celebrities and fans through live events, will be folded into Dentsu’s lifestyle marketing operation MKTG.

Dentsu Aegis Network Asia Pacific chief executive Nick Waters said the acquisition was a strategic one and illustrated a need to reach consumers in a different way.

“With the heavy disruption in the advertising model for brand building, the ability to reach live audiences carries increasing value,” he said. “As a result, lifestyle and experiential marketing is a strong growth segment in the region.

“Consumers will always be motivated by great content – sport, music, entertainment. Bringing Branded into our group will provide opportunities for our clients to develop strong marketing platforms from the live arena outwards, and enhance access to great talent.”

Branded co-founder Jasper Donat will remain as CEO of Branded and report to MKTG chief executive Sean O’Brien.

Donat, who founded Branded in 2002, said being part of a global network will provide opportunities to expand.

“Brands are demanding more powerful and creative live opportunities to meet their consumers face to face,” he said. “Integrating with MKTG gives Branded access to an immense client network and a genuine opportunity to expand and realise our global ambition as a producer of some of the world’s best known B2B and B2C live media events.

“I am also thrilled that this enables the development of new skills and career opportunities for the team that matters.”

Jasper Donat

Branded is a co-producer of YouTube FanFest global tour, owners and producers of ‘It’s A Girl Thing’ and Asia Pacific entertainment conference-cum-festival ‘All That Matters’.

In China, Branded produces Sports Connects and Tencent Music Connects.

In addition to co-producing events, Branded said it is focused on developing owned intellectual properties, events and content to build and own audiences.

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