Combined Firm Is Now 6th Largest U.S. Financial Services PR Agency and 36th Overall

PHILADELPHIA & BOSTON — May 14, 2024 — Gregory FCA, one of the nation’s top 40 largest public relations firms, has acquired BackBay Communications, a specialized financial strategic communications agency with offices in Boston and London. Based on O’Dwyer’s 2024 ranking of financial PR firms, the deal creates the country’s sixth largest financially focused strategic communications firm.

The BackBay acquisition is part of Gregory FCA’s broader growth strategy and its third acquisition with minority investor Copley Equity Partners. The deal adds to Gregory FCA’s deep bench of financial expertise with a stable of public relations and content professionals, including former journalists and analysts from The New York Times, Money, S&P Global, Celent, and American Banker.

“Talent wins,” says Greg Matusky, CEO and Founder of Gregory FCA. “While AI promises to disrupt our industry, talent is still the key driver. Complementing our award-winning, industry-recognized team, BackBay brings an impressive lineup of the brightest minds in strategic communications. We welcome BackBay into our verticalized practice, serving financial services, technology, real estate, healthcare, supply chain, nonprofit, and sustainability clients.”

For BackBay, the move provides an expanded suite of offerings through Gregory FCA’s investor relations, creative services, and digital marketing capabilities. In addition, BackBay gains access to Gregory FCA’s portfolio of AI tools designed to add efficiencies to agency workflows and amplify client outcomes.

BackBay will continue to operate under its trade name, with founder and CEO Bill Haynes leading the 27-person BackBay team as Executive Vice President and Managing Director. Haynes joins Gregory FCA’s New York Managing Director Brittany Bevacqua and newly elevated Chief Operating Officer Brittany Liberatore on the leadership team alongside Matusky and agency co-owner, President and head of Gregory FCA’s financial services division, Joe Anthony.

“We are proud of the culture, client base, and firm we have built at BackBay, so it was imperative for us to find a partner that shares our focus, approach, and values. We found that and more in Gregory FCA,” says Haynes. “The acquisition will provide enhanced career opportunities for our team members and additional value-added services for our clients, including Gregory FCA’s pioneering AI-enhanced workflows and its creative center of excellence. We are bringing together the best in the business to usher in the next era of strategic communications for financial services companies.”

Both agencies have played significant leadership roles in the financial agency landscape, and their combined expertise positions the firm to handle large-scale clients and those operating in the more nuanced segments of the market. Companies within the wealth management, asset management, private equity, private credit, fintech, wealthtech, insurance, capital markets, banking, sustainable investing, and digital asset sectors will now have an even stronger lineup of experienced, qualified professionals to lead and execute their strategic marketing and communications programs.

“BackBay and Gregory FCA are operating with a shared vision for the future, one that brings better strategic and tactical execution to our clients and career opportunities for our people,” says Anthony. “We have led with the approach that industry-specific knowledge is the power we need to make an outsized impact for clients. Our combination with Bill and his team allows us to deliver on that promise to an even greater extent.”

In addition to the acquisition of BackBay, Gregory FCA has continued to fuel growth through the effective and responsible use of AI, establishing itself as a thought leader in AI’s transformative impact on human communications. The firm’s first-mover position in AI development, testing, training, and deployment, and its passion to share its conclusions and findings with the broader communications sector, has led to industry-wide recognition and increased demand for its PR and marketing services. Gregory FCA was recently named to the 2024 Observer Tech & AI Power Player List, honored as a 2023 PR News Top 100 Agency Elite, and was the first-ever recipient of the PRSA Pepperpot Award for AI.

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