WE Acquires Content Marketing Agency Codeword



NEW YORK CITY — January 15, 2019 — WE Communications (WE) today announced its acquisition of leading content marketing agency, Codeword. This acquisition further accelerates WE’s content, digital, social and editorial capabilities for clients in North America.

Moving forward, Codeword will be known as WE Codeword and operate as a separate entity. WE Codeword will maintain its own client portfolio and continue to partner with WE on new business and joint client opportunities. The current leadership of Mike Barash, Jeff Lind, Michael McKloskey and Kyle Monson will continue to drive the business forward, working in partnership with WE leaders through a joint board headed by WE North America President Kass Sells.

“Like us, Codeword has a client-first focus, is deeply connected to technology, driven by purpose and acts as a leader in the evolving influence landscape,” said Melissa Waggener Zorkin, CEO of WE. “While much of the news on M&A in our industry over the last year has been about holding companies consolidating their assets, we are proud that this move represents growth and diversification for both of our independent, people-focused, high-performing, financially strong firms.”

With offices in New York, San Francisco and Salt Lake City, WE Codeword has differentiated itself through a focus on editorial and content, while building out services in PR, social media, strategy and analytics. Most of the team has backgrounds in journalism, media and publishing.

“We’ve been fans of Melissa and WE for a long time, and many of us have worked with WE in our past lives as journalists,” said Kyle Monson, WE Codeword partner. “We’re so excited for this next phase. We work hard to stay at the forefront of our industry, and partnering with WE gives us a bigger platform to do the kind of work we love to do for our clients — telling creative, relevant stories that move people to action.”

WE Codeword will round out WE’s current offering to provide clients with a robust platform of communications and content capabilities across the media ecosystem. WE client services span traditional media influencer relations to creative, content, social and editorial through to digital execution, measurement and analytics.

The acquisition is further proof of WE’s momentum in North America, including double-digit growth in the region and onboarding of new clients like McDonalds, iRobot, Brother and Tabula Rasa, among others.

“Joining forces just makes sense — for our world-class clients, and for our people,” said Kass Sells. “We’re already serving clients and winning new business together. And, we recognize great opportunity in how our combined talent and skill sets can create positive change in the marketing and communications landscape.”

About WE

WE is an integrated communications agency that has been telling transformative stories with innovative global brands for more than three decades. Female-founded, female-led, and fiercely independent, WE crafts campaigns to shift perceptions and drive action. Our independent spirit keeps us nimble. Our obsession with cutting-edge keeps us current. And our cross-capability partnerships in the PLUS Network keep us delivering wins for clients no matter what the RFP calls for.

One of the largest independent communications agencies in the world, WE shapes stories for global brands like Microsoft, Honeywell, McDonalds, iRobot and Volvo in more than 100 international markets. Our eighteen global offices are staffed with storytellers and strategists, data scientists and disruptors—more than 800 experts in the technology, health and consumer sectors. Our work has been recognized at Cannes Lions, the Holmes Report SABRE Awards, the PRWeek Awards just to name a few.

About WE Codeword

Founded in 2010, WE Codeword helps brands connect with passionate communities through a blend of content, PR, thoughtful creativity, and smart insights. The company brings a publishing approach to marketing and brand communications, with a focus on transparency, agility, and a deep understanding of the community. WE Codeword has offices in New York, San Francisco, and Salt Lake, and services a broad range of global technology companies and startups.

For more information, press only: Kara Kraft, WE Communications, (503) 443-7143, karak@we-worldwide.com