Argyle adds social depth with Matchstick addition

Toronto based public relations agency Argyle has taken a controlling stake in digital and social agency Matchstick.

It’s the second significant expansion for Argyle this year after adding Western Canadian firms Context and ChangeMakers in January. At that time, Argyle said the expanded agency had revenue of more than $17 million.

The Matchstick deal is specifically about adding social and digital expertise from one of Canada’s oldest digital-first agencies.

The addition of Matchstick’s staff will take Argyle to just over 90 employees across the country. Matchstick’s seven employees will move into Argyle’s Toronto office, with co-founders Patrick Thoburn and Matthew Stradiotto continuing to lead the Matchstick offering.

“Argyle takes a controlling interest in Matchstick and the principals maintain a significant ongoing stake in the success of the business,” said Argyle CEO Daniel Tisch. “We go back a long way and we had discussions over the last couple of years where it became increasingly attractive for us to grow in this way.”

Both the Matchstick deal and the earlier expansion reflect the continued “blurring of boundaries” across the communications services landscape, said Tisch. By expanding its service offerings, Argyle is now able to provide more integrated solutions and make earlier strategic contributions.

“We have the relationship with clients where we’re at the strategy table with them fairly early on and helping them make decisions about where they invest resources in order to achieve their goals,” he said. Adding Matchstick to the fold means better discussions about social solutions earlier in the process, he said.

“The combination of Matchstick’s skills in building social brands with Argyle’s full suite of services in public engagement, communications and social marketing creates a powerful opportunity for integrated, cross-platform communication,” said Thoburn in a release.

David Brown