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Hot off the signing desk, digital marketing agency World Wide Creative (WWC) has announced that Saratoga, a subsidiary of JSE-listed Sekunjalo Investments Limited, now holds a sizeable stake in its business, making it a majority shareholder in the company.
World Wide Creative was launched in 2003 by business partners Fred Roed and Mike Perk and has created digital products for the likes of Virgin Mobile, BizConnect and the Democratic Alliance. The company and its team are also responsible for the Heavy Chef Project, which focuses on practical learning about digital marketing as well as a series of talks with industry heavyweights.
According to Roed, the company has not been bought out, it has simply acquired a new investor who now holds more than 50% stake in the business.
“We haven’t sold the business,” he says. “This is more of an investment and Mike and I still hold a pretty decent stake in the business. Saratoga is interested in the mobile industry and they like what we are doing in that space so this made sense for them and us. Saratoga is particularly interested in mobile, big development, SEO and paid search.”
Saratoga is a software company, focused on creating profitable business solutions.
“For us, this move signifies a convergence of technology and marketing,” says Anthony Robinson, CEO of Saratoga. “We see a compelling synergy between Saratoga’s established technology services and World Wide Creative’s skill at designing and implementing world class digital work.”
Saratoga is in majority owned by the Sekunjalo group. Sekunjalo Investments Limited is a black-owned and black-controlled investment holding company situated in Southern Africa. It says that its main objective is to empower previously disadvantaged individuals through job creation and maximizing shareholder wealth generation by making strategic investments. The group was established in 1996 as a Black Economic Empowerment investment group.
It currently employs around 650 people and has investments in fishing and aquaculture, financial services, healthcare and pharmaceuticals, IT, telecoms, biotech and enterprise development.
For the WWC team, the benefits of this alliance are clear.
“Saratoga is a successful entity in its own right, with a team of highly respected leaders that have a large amount of experience in the ICT field,” says WWC. “Whilst World Wide Creative can bolster Saratoga’s offering in the areas of marketing, design and usability, Saratoga in turn will help us ramp up efficiency in delivering excellent service to you, our client.”
According to WWC, most things will remain business as usual with the heads retaining a large share of the company.
“What you can expect to change is increased innovation within creative campaigns, greater focus on mobile applications, e-commerce, paid search, SEO and paid media, and a slightly larger pool of resources for you to call upon,” says the company.