Academy Internet’s parent company Academy Learning Ltd (AI) today announced it has acquired Site Visibility, the search marketing agency. Academy Internet’s own search marketing operations have been merged with those of Site Visibility and the combined business is anticipated to rank as one of the top 15 Search Marketing agencies in the UK during 2008.
The Search Marketing industry is experiencing rapid change with consolidation of both the Search Engines and the Search Marketing consultancies. AI already ranks 34th in the 2007 Deloitte Technology Fast 50 and 144th in the 2007 Deloitte Technology EMEA Fast 500 league tables. During late 2007 AI secured funding to enable further expansion through a combination of continued organic growth and a series of planned acquisitions and mergers with other digital agencies during 2008.
Site Visibility’s founder and managing director Damon Lightley has joined the AI Executive Management Board and has become a shareholder in AI. Site Visibility becomes AI’s “acquisition marketing” offering to customers who want to acquire, convert and retain their customers online.
The merged operations are expected to deliver tangible benefits for customers including:
* A doubling of search marketing consultants enables better levels of service
* Investment in AI’s cutting edge graduate training programme with a 6 new trainees currently being recruited for the 2008 intake
* Investment in customer service training across the business
* R&D investment into improving business processes and methodologies
* Stronger account management and planning
* Improved reporting and “best practice” Search Marketing methodologies
* AI’s back office support allows the Site Visibility team to focus on customer service
* Easy access to AI’s existing web, social media and e-learning design and maintenance, blogs, podcasting, online PR, email marketing, web analytics / conversion consulting and digital marketing training
AI chief executive Jason Woodford announced, “This investment is one further step in our mission to become one of the UK’s leading digital agencies. I am delighted to welcome both Damon to the AI Board and his experienced team into AI. Site Visibility boasts an impressive customer list with high levels of customer satisfaction and we have already experienced an excellent cultural fit and business synergy. ”
Site Visibility managing director Damon Lightley confirmed, “My decision to merge Site Visibility with AI is great for customers as well as for my people. As part of AI, my customers will benefit from their greater financial resources as well as access to their highly complementary digital marketing and communications services. Together we possess a potent capability to acquire, convert and retain customers online which is of increasing importance to our larger customers.”
This is of course the official press release, we’ll have our own more ‘blog-like’ version of events up in a wee while…