The acquisition will increase First Protocol’s total workforce to approximately 185 employees worldwide, with 125 in New York. Maureen Ryan-Fable, who will continue in her role as CEO Americas at First Protocol, said that offices would be expanded and revamped in line with the rebrand next month.
Ryan-Fable said: "We are excited about the acquisition of BKA, which will expand upon our overall offerings, add to our capacity, complement our creative and production service offerings, and strengthen our international presence to design, produce and execute world-class event experiences."
She added that there would be a focus on ‘integration’, as the companies merged. "This is a huge step for us and we’ve been working on this for several years. I hope the services of BKA will be expanded to the UK and Singapore markets."
Current BKA president Jeff Kalpak will retain the presidency title under the new brand. "We have known and worked with First Protocol for many years, and we have a shared vision of becoming the best in the industry," he explained.
"I think the experiential element complements the traditional conferencing arm of the business extremely well. These days more and more companies are looking for experiential elements at B2B events and conferences. Regardless of sector, this merger allows us to better collaborate. Our focus is now is to merge our cultures and blend as a family. First Protocol is a rapidly growing company and that’s really exciting for us."
The news follows the announcement that Barry Richards would be joining the New York office as president of the managed services division.
"We’ve had two strategic directions on the cards for a while now, and they’ve both happened simultaneously," said Ryan-Fable. "The first is the renewed focus on managed services, which Barry will take control of, and the other is the growth of the production and creative side of the agency."
She added that further acquisitions in the UK and Singapore markets 'might be considered' in the future.
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