Specialist healthcare strategy and communications firm ZPB has acquired Journalista in a move to further establish itself as one of the most connected, considered and creative, data-led independent consultancies in the UK. SI Partners advised the shareholders of Journalista on the transaction.
Both agencies have been established for over ten years and have previously combined forces to deliver award winning campaigns for clients including Dr Foster (shortlisted for PR Week Media Campaign of the Year) and Patient Opinion (Winner PRCA Evaluation Award).
The acquisition will bring together Journalista’s roster, which includes Healthcare UK, Big White Wall and Enterprise Research Centre, alongside ZPB’s recent clients wins, such as Novartis and Push Dr, to further extend their combined reach into research, digital health and pharma.
The combined teams will be drawn from across the system, including NHS England, the regulators, key sector media, hospital trusts, and data firms. Together the businesses will now build on ZPB’s reputation for bringing insight, intelligence and authenticity to its communications and market strategies.
The expansion is part of a strategic growth programme aligned with ZPB’s recent relaunch of the Digital Healthcare Council, to enable every person to access safe, digital primary and secondary care. Earlier this year, ZPB also appointed three new senior advisors, former NHS CEO Paul Mears; Chairman of Croydon NHS Health Services, Mike Bell; and former NED at MHRA and the DCMS, Matthew Campbell-Hill.
ZPB Founder and CEO, Zoe Bedford: “We have worked alongside Holly and her team at Journalista for a number of years, often sharing clients, so this feels like a natural move. We know that clients prefer independent, highly-specialised consultancies like ZPB and Journalista, so this allows the two businesses to remain independent whilst having a bigger team with more resource to compete with some of the larger players.”
“We have a particular skill in bringing new insights through our strong understanding of health system dynamics, data, what you can and can’t do with it, and how to use it in high-impact campaigns. Often people who understand data don’t know how to communicate, and people who know how to communicate don’t know how to work with data. That’s ZPB’s niche. Boosting our communications offer is critical to us having even more impact with these insights, so bringing Journalista into our team is a really exciting development for us.
Journalista Founder, Holly Sutton: “ZPB and Journalista operate in similar spaces, with shared values, mutually supportive services and a vision for making complex issues clearer for people across health and social care, research and digital.
“We’ve done great work together in the past and our teams are similarly drawn from varied specialist backgrounds, so it makes sense for us to join forces to better support and expand what we offer to our healthcare, research, social support and university clients. Becoming part of ZPB means we can offer a stronger proposition to compete for the opportunities arising in the fusion of health and social care, research and digital.”