Accenture has taken a majority stake in SinnerSchrader, one of the leading digital agencies in Germany, agency founder Matthias Schrader announced on Monday.
The corporate consultancy has agreed to purchase 62 percent of shares in SinnerSchrader, including all the shares held by Mr. Schrader, as well as those of financial director Thomas Dyckhoff and other shareholders.
The move means that Mr. Schrader, who as of March 2016 held 23 percent of the agency’s shares, will get €103.5 million, or $109.1 million, from the sale.
Accenture is seeking a full takeover, and will soon launch a public tender offer to remaining shareholders at the same price of €9 per share, 31 percent more than the average price of the past three months.
The Hamburg-based agency will be absorbed into the consultancy’s digital division Accenture Interactive.
SinnerSchrader and Accenture Interactive said in a press release that together they “will aim to jointly develop digital transformation solutions through the combination of consulting, design and technology.”
“The sale is very consistent with market logic.”
Together with his business partner Oliver Sinner, Mr. Schrader founded SinnerSchrader 21 years ago. The digital agency currently employs 500 people. It designs and develops digital products and services for major German companies such as Allianz, Audi, Ergo and Volkswagen. The agency ended the last fiscal year with record sales of €51 million and a profit of €4.5 million.
“The sale is very consistent with market logic,” Wolf Ingomar Faecks, the chairman of the German Association of Communications Agencies (GWA), told Handelsblatt. And current market logic is consolidation, Mr. Faecks added.
Under the terms of the agreement, Mr. Schrader will keep his role as chief executive of the newly acquired company and, after a two-year transition period, lead the joint digital agency business of Accenture Interactive in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. There, he will in be charge of a thoroughly different structure, Mr. Faecks said.
Ad Age, a market and media industry magazine, named Accenture Interactive the world’s largest digital agency last year, with estimated sales of $3 billion. Rainer Balensiefer, who currently holds Mr. Schrader’s future post, is slated to switch to “a prominent leadership role in the digital area of Accenture in German-speaking countries” by 2019.
Catrin Bialek is a Handelsblatt correspondent based in Dusseldorf. To contact the author: email@example.com.