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Avenir Global

SI Partners advises communications consultancy Hanover on sale to AVENIR GLOBAL




Sell Side


April 2019


AVENIR GLOBAL continues to build global powerhouse of specialist communications firms with acquisition of Hanover. SI Partners, long-term advisor to Hanover, advised the shareholders on the transaction.

Combined operations rank among top U.K. and European consultancies

MONTREAL and LONDON – AVENIR GLOBAL, a Montreal-based holding and management company of public relations and communications firms, today announced that it has acquired Hanover, a top 10 independent U.K. public relations consultancy with offices in London, Brussels, Dublin, Dubai and Abu Dhabi.


“We’ve been working closely with Charles and his impressive management team for six years, as the business has transformed into the finely oiled machine that it is today.To achieve the scale that Hanover has without outside investment or misstep is almost unheard of in the sector. I’m confident that in AVENIR they have found the perfect partner for the next phase of the journey.”

Tristan Rice, Partner at SI Partners who led the transaction.

This transaction is part of AVENIR GLOBAL’s strategic plan to build a global powerhouse of specialist communications firms delivering outstanding value to clients. The deal significantly enhances AVENIR GLOBAL’s EMEA offering.

“AVENIR GLOBAL provided a strong business case for joining forces to create an unrivalled worldwide team of specialist communications firms. We share a common belief in building a high degree of client service and expertise,” said Charles Lewington, Founder and CEO of Hanover.

With the acquisition of Hanover, AVENIR GLOBAL consists of 1,000 employees in 25 locations across North America, Europe and the Middle East. Its annualised revenue of £125M will rank the firm in the top 15 worldwide public relations agencies.


“We are building a powerful network of colleagues who are the best in their field and our goal is to provide our clients with bold thinking founded on research, insights and deep sector expertise. Hanover is hugely respected as one of the best and fastest growing agencies in the world and this transaction showcases our ambitions. In addition to an enhanced geographic footprint, there is a strong cultural alignment, which is critical to our teams working well together,” said Ralph Sutton, International Managing Partner of AVENIR GLOBAL.

“Hanover focuses on communications and public affairs disciplines which are key to our network, in addition to deep sectoral expertise in healthcare, financial services, technology, media, energy, fast-moving consumer goods, industrials and sport. The combined business in the U.K. places us among the country’s largest public relations consultancies; second in public affairs and first in healthcare.”

Hanover is one of Europe’s leading strategic communications and public affairs consultancies with 163 employees, advising global companies on building recognition and enhancing reputation. Clients include Goldman Sachs, Airbus, Microsoft, Apple, Warner Media, Sky, Lucozade Ribena Suntory, Premier League, Tata Steel, Lilly, Novartis, BMS, Roche and Takeda. The Hanover Group also includes creative communications agency The Playbook, and Multiple, a brand and culture consultancy that enables technology challengers and corporate change-makers to define their purpose, fire up their people and build platforms for growth. The agency’s leadership team will remain in place following the transaction.

AVENIR GLOBAL has 300 healthcare communications staff harnessing expertise in public relations, reputation management, crisis and issues management, medical communications, clinical trial support, marketing communications, public affairs, market access and internal communications. The firm works for many of the largest names in the pharmaceutical and medical device industries as well as working with healthcare providers, technology firms and patient advocacy organisations.

Other sectors where the combined group will have particular strength on both sides of the Atlantic include food and drink, energy and financial services, and the communications disciplines of reputation management, public affairs and issues and crisis management.

“By joining the AVENIR GLOBAL network, we broaden our offering in insights and research, add impressive resources in creative and digital campaigning and execution, and can draw on additional scientific expertise in healthcare, food and drink, and energy. Our international clients also now have access to a strong presence in North America which will help us meet their international communications objectives.’ said Charles Lewington.

The announcement is SI Partners’ fourth transaction this year following the sale of ?WhatIf! to AccentureHappy Marketer’s sale to Merkle in Singapore, and CatchOn’s sale to Finn Partners in Hong Kong.

Read press coverage of the transaction in PR Week, Holmes Report and PMLive.

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To achieve the scale that Hanover has without outside investment or misstep is almost unheard of in the sector. I’m confident that in AVENIR they have found the perfect partner for the next phase of the journey.

Tristan Rice, SI Partners.