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Gorilla Nation Case Study

Gorilla Nation sought a trusted partner to help set up its London operation. London & Partners' San Francisco office helped them establish their business in the capital.

Client Profile

Company:
Gorilla Nation
Sector:
Creative Industries, Technology, Sales and Marketing
HQ:
USA
London Location:
Central London
London & Partners Services:
Provided professional services guidance: banking, human resources, employment law. Networking and business contacts
Website:
www.gorillanation.com

Gorilla Nation

Gorilla Nation is the world's largest online advertising sales representation company. Founded in the US in 2001, it handles media sales for more than 500 web publishers and offers integrated media and promotional solutions to Fortune 500 advertisers. Headquartered in Los Angeles, Gorilla Nation also has offices in New York, Chicago, Toronto and now London.

Business Aim: Enter UK Markets and Brand Expansion

Having built a successful business across North America and Canada, Gorilla Nation wanted to tap into lucrative UK markets. It also sought to use London as a launch pad to extend its brand across Europe and to Australia. The challenge: to find a trusted "ear on the ground" to advise on the detail of doing business in the UK capital.

London & Partners Services

Business Success in London

Gorilla Nation opened its London office in April 2008. It chose Soho, Central London – the very heart of Europe's advertising and digital media marketing community. The office employs five staff, all recruited from the UK's rich talent pool. From London, Gorilla Nation is creating high-impact, integrated advertising programmes for leading UK and European firms. It is now exploring expansion to Australia.

Market Factors

  • The UK's online advertising market has grown 21% year-on-year and is expected to be worth £7.33 billion ($13.61 billion) by 2012. The UK market accounts for 35% of total online advertising spend in Europe
  • London leads in online advertising, interactive communications and digital TV. Some 19 of the top 25 European software and IT service suppliers have their HQ in London
  • The 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games will be the most digital Games in history. Partners and sponsors are expected to spend 10-15% of their marketing budgets on digital channels
  • Collaboration between London's advertising, telcos, design and technology leaders is producing new content and revenue streams
  • London has Europe's largest pool of marketers. More than 8.5% of the Chartered Institute of Marketing's 50,000 members are based in London
  • The world's biggest market – 500 million people in the European Union – is on the doorstep
  • London is home to Europe's largest regional workforce – more than 9.8 million – with one in three holding a university degree

Gorilla Nation Interview

It's like having a personal guide to doing business in the UK; as if your best friend had just moved to the country.

Esther Wu, Director of Human Resources at Gorilla Nation explains how London & Partners facilitated their successful move to London.

Choosing London

"London & Partners's San Francisco office was the primary contact for us during our expansion to London; it was incredibly useful to have someone on the doorstep of our HQ.

"With a presence in the US and Canada we felt that London was the next logical spot for us – not just in the UK but in Europe. We knew that our business model would travel.

"We were very impressed by the business opportunities in London. We found that if you have a solid product that delivers measurable results, you can absolutely excel there. We also discovered that, despite the global downturn, UK advertising budgets weren't being drastically slashed. Companies wanted their money to work harder but they weren't pulling entire campaigns."

Contacts and Local Knowledge

It's been wonderful to recruit from such a talent pool. We found a combination of selling skills, a deep understanding of our global business and a real keenness to build business across London, the UK and the rest of Europe.

"London & Partners contacted us in 2007; they were very proactive. Their knowledge and reach has been incredibly helpful and the value add is undoubtedly their contacts. They helped us with every query, no matter how specific. They've been extremely loquacious in terms of offering assistance.

"We were having some issues over setting up UK bank accounts. I contacted London & Partners and they helped solve the problem. I needed assistance with stakeholder pension plans and they provided names of vendors. It's like having a personal guide to doing business in the UK; as if your best friend had just moved to the country."

Open for Business in London

"We opened for business in London in April 2008 and the office has already grown to five people. We're fully integrated already.

"We always hire locally and we've acquired some amazing people. It's been wonderful to recruit from such a talent pool. We found a combination of selling skills, a deep understanding of our global business and a real keenness to build business across London, the UK and the rest of Europe.

"We're going to progress across Europe and London is the ideal spot to move forward and launch European initiatives. That's not to say that we won't have somebody in Paris or Berlin in the future but it's going to start from the London office.

"As for the downturn, I think there are potential pitfalls with every opportunity but we are cautiously optimistic. We see this as an entrepreneurial phase, knocking on doors to see what we can do. London is such a close-knit community, you can build contacts and business fast.

"We are very excited about the opportunity in London and we are now looking at Australia. We're basically following the old British Empire map across the world and London & Partners has played a vital role in putting on us on the right path."

Contact us to find out how we can help you set up your business in London.