SKDKnickerbocker acquires Seward Square Strategies

WASHINGTON: SKDKnickerbocker has acquired digital political firm Seward Square Strategies and named its founder, Jason Rosenbaum, as its head of digital.

Seward Square has essentially morphed into SKDK’s digital department, named SKDK Digital, as its own brand has been retired. SKDKnickerbocker declined to discuss financial details of the acquisition.

All of Seward Square’s employees started working at SKDKnickerbocker on Monday, with plans to move into the firm’s office. There were no layoffs as a result of the deal. 

The acquisition means SKDKnickerbocker can offer capabilities including large-scale donor, supporter and customer acquisition programs, persuasion advertising across digital platforms and email fundraising strategy. 

Rosenbaum is reporting to SKDKnickerbocker CEO Josh Isay. The agency had been without a digital lead since Jake Schonfeld left the firm last November. Schonfeld is chief growth officer at education company Slader. 

Prior to opening Seward, Rosenbaum managed digital advertising for former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign and was in charge of Google’s election and advocacy department.

Last month, SKDKnickerbocker acquired Sloane & Company in what was the first acquisition in its 16-year history. Sloane is operating as an independent, wholly-owned subsidiary of SKDK with Darren Brandt and Whit Clay continuing in their roles as co-CEOs. 

Both agencies are owned by companies managed by former Burson-Marsteller CEO and one-time top Clinton adviser Mark Penn. MDC Partners acquired a majority stake in Sloane in 2010, and Stagwell Group bought SKDKnickerbocker in 2015, the year Penn founded the investment vehicle. Last March, Stagwell invested $100 million into MDC and Penn was named its CEO.

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