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BCD Meetings & Events acquires Zibrant

BCD M&E acquires Zibrant to strengthen and diversify its events business in the European market
22/07/2016

Pictured: Geertjan Jongeneel (BCD), Marc Lammens (BCD), Fay Sharpe (Zibrant), Nigel Cooper (Zibrant)

BCD Meetings & Events (BCD M&E) has acquired Zibrant.

BCD M&E says it has made the acquisition to strengthen and diversify its events business in the European market.

“This is the latest in a line of smart, strategic acquisitions for us to grow our global presences and service offering,” said Scott Graf, BCD M&E Global President. “Zibrant brings size, scale and expertise to our UK presence allowing us to better compete in a strong events market.”

BCD M&E will welcome Zibrant’s 130-strong staff to its growing EMEA team. Additionally, the move means BCD M&E can offer customers additional and expanded capabilities within its events offering including creative communications, full-scale production services and expert venue sourcing/finding services.

“Zibrant has a strong brand, reputation and service values which aligns perfectly with BCD Meetings & Events,” said Marc Lammens, BCD M&E managing director, EMEA. “With our combined expertise and services, we realized our organizations are better together than apart—as an employer, service provider and partner.”

Zibrant chairman Nigel Cooper, who has now also become the managing director of BCD M&E UK, said: “As one of the UK most recognised meetings and event management agencies we pride ourselves on creating solutions that meet our clients’ needs and realise their objectives. Since our inception, we have led the way in developing the UK meetings and events industry from managing strategic global programmes, bespoke venue solutions to producing major live events and creating memorable communications platforms. 

“At Zibrant we never stand still, the nature of our business doesn’t allow it. We continually evolve with the latest trends, expertise and technology to find our clients the best solution. We seek to lead the way in creating and offering new services and utilising the latest technological advancements to push the boundaries of what’s possible. This evolution and our invaluable experiences have made us who we are today and underpin our three Zibrant brands.”

“Improving and growing our existing services have always been our core strategy so we are delighted to introduce BCD M&E’s global reach and additional suite of services to our customers,” said Cooper. “The access to BCD M&E’s presence in more than 40 countries gives us the ability to meet our customers’ needs of global meetings management.”

When asked if the acquisition would lead to any redundancies at either firm, Cooper said: “The main intention and expectation is growth. Zibrant has five UK offices, now there are six. Everyone’s busy doing what they’re doing. We’re currently recruiting staff, we’ve got a new client we’re onboarding, the last thing on our minds is cutting back.”

BCD M&E’s UK operations saw pre-tax profit up 43 per cent to £250k for the year ended 31 December 2015. Although turnover decreased by 13 per cent to £4.3 million from £4.9m in 2014, operating profit margin, adjusted for non-recurring items, grew by £51k to £185k in 2015.

Zibrant saw operating profits rise 62 per cent to £624k in 2015, up from £386k in 2014. Zibrant's accounts for the year-ending 1 December 2015 also revealed a 3 per cent increase in turnover to £17.6 million. 

Cooper added: “It feels like a family. I’ve spent quite a lot of time with people in Holland and Chicago and London and they all talk about a family. It’s something I’ve felt and experienced. I’m honoured and privileged to be given responsibility for the UK business.” 


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