WPP’S BRAND UNION ACQUIRES BRAZILIAN BRANDING, IDENTITY AND COMMUNICATIONS AGENCY EPIGRAM

by Chris Saunders , FTI Consulting

Global Brand Agency Expands Reach in Latin America

NEW YORK (September 9th, 2014) – Brand Union, the WPP Group global brand agency, has extended its reach into Brazil by acquiring a majority stake in Epigram, a branding, identity and communications agency based in São Paulo. Effective immediately, Epigram, which was founded in 2004 by partners Marcelo M. Bicudo and Daniel Lifschitz, will come under the umbrella of Brand Union Americas. Bicudo and Lifschitz will continue to lead the 60-strong operation in Brazil, and will report to Toby Southgate, CEO, Americas.

“Brazil is a critical market for clients looking at emerging trends and changing behaviors. It’s also a hotbed of creative and strategic talent. Marcelo and Daniel have built a world-class team and forged a reputation for excellence, and we are truly excited to welcome them to Brand Union. Our teams have a great deal to learn from each other, and our respective clients will benefit as a result,” said Toby Southgate, CEO Americas, Brand Union.

Epigram has grown its national and international reputation through a history of high profile work with consumer and retail brands including Asics, Vivara, Giraffas, The Beauty Box (Grupo Boticário), Zuum (a mobile payments system developed in JV between Mastercard and Telefonica), Banco Itaú, Natura, Cacau Show, Highstil, Vivo, Petrobras, Royal Caribbean, China in Box, Abit, and Herman Miller, among others. Known for being on the cutting edge of integration between brand strategy, sales channels, customer experience and communications, Epigram works with its methodology ‘Bretail’ (brading+retail) in order to ensure consistent brand experiences along the consumer journey, ensuring physical and digital environments come together and work seamlessly.

Our unique and interdisciplinary approach to creating a unified experience for consumers across channels and touch points, turning shoppers into buyers, fits in perfectly with Brand Union’s overarching strategy and worldwide savoir faire in consumer branding,” said Marcelo M. Bicudo, co-founder of Epigram.

Epigram has earned international recognition for its work, developing international projects and earning several prizes at Wave Festival, POPAI, Globe Awards, including the ‘Rethinking The Future’ Award for the Natura showroom design. Epigram’s longstanding partnership with Asics has also garnered global recognition and creative awards, including two recently received from VMSD and another from Idea Brasil.

“It is fantastic to incorporate Brand Unions tools, methodologies, global experience in strategy as well in innovation and design to our clients,” said Daniel Lifschitz, co-founder of Epigram.

Simon Bolton, Worldwide CEO of Brand Union and FITCH Group, commented on the acquisition “We have known and worked with Daniel and Marcelo on a number of major client engagements over the last few years: Heineken, Reckitt Benckiser, Sony. They are world-class operators with a great business and a fantastic culture. We are proud to welcome them to our network,” he said.

About Brand Union

Brand Union is a leading WPP-owned global brand agency with deep expertise in brand strategy, design, brand management and employee engagement. Brand Union’s network extends to more than 500 people in 24 locations, serving every major market, consulting with clients to define, create, and curate the moments of interaction that are essential for brands to thrive today and tomorrow. Brand Union’s clients include Bank of America, Reckitt Benckiser, Vodafone, GSK, Heineken, Pernod Ricard and South African Airways.

Experiences form the basis of all kinds of human relationships, with other people and with the world around us. We believe it’s just the same for brands. Successful brands make lasting impressions on us as a result of continual, positive moments of interaction. These experiences influence satisfaction, build loyalty, and create emotional attachment. Using our proprietary Experience Framework, we create brand imprints to help us understand how consumers view and experience brands and how we can help enhance every moment of interaction. For more information, please visit. www.BrandUnion.com.

About Epigram

Founded in 2004 by partners Marcelo M. Bicudo and Daniel Lifschitz, Epigram is based in Sao Paulo and employs 60 people. The agency created the concept of ‘Bretail’ (branding+retail) and has garnered global attention for its capabilities in strategy and creative delivery throughout the customer journey from awareness through purchase to loyalty. Epigram’s clients include MasterCard, Telefonica, Vivaras, Giraffas and Delboni.

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