SPA Future Thinking makes third bolt-on acquisition

SPA Future Thinking has acquired the Munro Group, which incorporates FDS International and Maven Research, for an undisclosed sum.

The acquisition makes SPA Future Thinking the UK’s leading independent market researcher, with a turnover of approximately £20 million.  The acquisition follows the merger of SPA Market research and Future Thinking (formerly the Oxford Research Agency) in September 2010.

The acquisition adds a complementary skill set of benchmarking and mystery shopping research as well as employee engagement and online dashboard reporting to SPA Future Thinking and expands the group’s blue chip client roster.

‘‘These are respected research agencies and their purchase is a milestone in our growth strategy,’ said Jon Priest, group CEO of SPA Future Thinking. “FDS and Maven bring a wealth of expertise to our offer, with a client portfolio that complements our own strengths in our core digital, financial, FMCG, media and retail sectors. The acquisition broadens the range of market leading services and expertise we provide our clients and provides superior career opportunities for our people both in the UK and overseas.”

Munro will be incorporated into the SPA Future Thinking brand, with Richard Hepburn, currently CEO at Munro Global, joining the group’s Board.   Charlotte Cornish, currently MD of FDS and COO of Munro, will leave the business after a short handover period.

Following the acquisition, SPA Future Thinking will have over 150 employees in the UK and overseas and turnover approaching £20 million. The acquisition has been funded by the Group’s existing shareholders, led by Next Wave Partners.

Jonathan Brod, of Next Wave Partners, adds: “The merger of SPA and Future Thinking in September 2010 has proven a great success and we are delighted to support the Group in its continued expansion to create the UK’s leading independent market research agency.”

Notes to editors

SPA Future Thinking offers thought leadership across a wide range of sectors and specialisms. It is one of the largest independent market research companies in the UK with offices in London, Oxford, Paris and Bologna. SPA Future Thinking’s expertise in cutting through data to present user-friendly findings enables it to identify the insights critical to growing businesses and ensuring success.

SPA Future Thinking is consistently rated by its clients amongst the best for client satisfaction. Specialist areas include media and technology, shopper insight, concept, product and packaging development, customer satisfaction, kids, education, and employee satisfaction.

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