The end of 2022 brought big changes — and potentially big opportunity — to CultHealth.
In October, the full-service agency was snapped up by Indegene, a deal funded in part by PE firms (and minority Indegene stakeholders) Carlyle Group and Brighton Park Capital. On one hand, the status quo prevailed in the wake of the deal: CultHealth retained its branding, and no layoffs were involved. On the other, the newly acquired company, which was founded in 2010, could immediately avail itself of its new parent’s suite of analytics and technology platforms.
When the deal was announced, Indegene executive director and CEO Manish Gupta told MM+M that the CultHealth acquisition filled a gap in his company’s offerings. He specifically touted CultHealth’s creative and medical chops, noting that the latter was particularly important “given the way the biopharma pipeline is shaping up.”
CultHealth president Laurence Richards, who joined the company in early 2022 from Precisioneffect and was elevated to his current role in January, agrees. He points to Indegene’s analytics capabilities as an essential addition to his company’s tactical armamentarium.
“The recommendations that we provide to clients help them not only better market their brands, but also think about how the brands are performing in the digital space,” he explains. “Our engagement strategy team that distributes content also uses the analytics to have a better experience with the brands.”
Amid the dealmaking and the change that came with it, CultHealth enjoyed a healthy growth spurt in 2022. Revenue spiked 45%, to $30.7 million from $21.2 million in 2021. The company added Supernus and Veru to a client roster led by Novo Nordisk (for work on seven brands, including Ozempic), AbbVie (two brands), Clovis Oncology and Servier.
CultHealth also increased its staff size, from 105 full-timers at the start of the year to 125 at the end of it. Among the key additions were chief creative officer David Stemler, formerly executive creative director at CDM New York, and SVP, director of client services Marie Jones, formerly VP, group management supervisor at BGB Group.
In the wake of the Indegene acquisition, CultHealth has devoted considerable time and care — and resources — to ensuring that its company culture isn’t a casualty of the deal. Not surprisingly, Richards attributes CultHealth’s growth to the hard work and creative thinking of its people.
“CultHealth is like a family,” he says. “The day you enter the agency, you already feel like you’ve been invited into our family with no prerequisites.”
As for the second half of CultHealth’s first full year as a part of Indegene, Richards anticipates continued growth.
“2022 was an expansion year. We were fortunate to work with a lot of new business, and that set us up for the future beyond the acquisition,” he explains. “So we’re taking our learnings from 2022 and applying them to 2023. We want to make sure we’re still delivering what the agency was built upon 13 years ago.”
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Our marketing role model…
Greg Hahn, the cofounder of Mischief @ No Fixed Address. Disrupting the Super Bowl via the now infamous Interface Interruption ad isn’t just a one-off idea from a kooky creative gone rogue; it’s part of a pattern of work that doesn’t conform to agency or industry norms. Mischief isn’t just the agency’s name. It’s the agency’s routine and the mentality they have every time they walk in the door. — Richards