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FGS Global

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FGS Global
PredecessorsFinsbury, Hering Schuppener, The Glover Park Group, Sard Verbinnen & Co
Founded1994; 30 years ago (1994)
Area served
Key people
Alexander Geiser (CEO)
ParentWPP plc (57.4%)[1]

FGS Global is a strategic advisory and communications consultancy formed in 2021 by the merger of Finsbury Glover Hering and Sard Verbinnen & Co. It is a subsidiary of British advertising and media conglomerate WPP plc.


Finsbury was founded by Roland Rudd in 1994 as Finsbury.[2] In 2001, the firm was sold to WPP in a deal that the Financial Times estimated earned Rudd £40 million.[3][4] Rudd remained chairman of the company.[3]

RLM Finsbury[edit]

In 2011, Finsbury[2] merged with Robinson Lerer & Montgomery of New York to form RLM Finsbury.[5][6] Rudd continued as chairman and Walter G. Montgomery became chief executive officer of the enlarged firm. Montgomery retired as chief executive officer in 2014, but remained a partner in the firm.[7] Montgomery was replaced by Michael Gross until 2017 when he transitioned to Vice-Chair and Paul Homes was announced as CEO.[7][8]

2012 Wikipedia editing[edit]

In 2012, The Times reported that Alisher Usmanov, a Russian billionaire who was about to launch one of the largest stock market listings in London for his MegaFon mobile phone company, hired RLM Finsbury which "covertly cleaned up his online image and removed details of his past" before the offering.[9] The Telegraph reported that RLM Finsbury staff anonymously "deleted details of a Soviet-era criminal conviction and freedom of speech row" and then "replaced those sections with text outlining Mr Usmanov's philanthropy and art collection."[10] According to O'Dwyer's PR, the firm publicly apologised in The Times, giving the following statement: "This was not done in the proper manner nor was this approach authorized by Mr. Usmanov. We apologize for this and it will not happen again."[11]

Finsbury rebrand[edit]

In 2014, RLM Finsbury rebranded to Finsbury which the firm felt would underline its global ambitions.[12]

In 2020, Finsbury developed "Finsbury's Workforce Return", a service that guided businesses in managing employees returning to the workplace after the COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns.[13]

Finsbury Glover Hering[edit]

In January 2021, Finsbury, The Glover Park Group (GPG), and Hering Schuppener completed their merger and management buy-in of 49.99%, and became known as Finsbury Glover Hering.[14] At that stage, the company had 18 offices and almost 700 consultants worldwide. WPP remained a 50.01% investor.[15][16] Following the merger, Rudd and Carter Eskew, founder of GPG, served as co-chairs of the new firm, and Alexander Geiser, managing partner at Hering Schuppener, served as CEO.[15][17] As of October 2021, the business was worth $917 million.[1]

FGS Global[edit]

In December 2021, Finsbury Glover Hering and Sard Verbinnen & Co. merged and rebranded as FGS Global, with Geiser appointed as CEO.[18][19] The agency then had 25 offices in North America, Europe, Asia and the Middle East, and over 1,000 employees.[15] In October 2022, FGS Global opened its eighth office in Europe.[20] Also in 2022, the firm ranked number one in terms of the volume and the value of mergers and acquisitions deals.[21] In January 2023, FGS Global led communication consulting in operations in Spain.[22]

In April 2023, US private equity investor KKR was reported to be in talks to buy a stake in FGS Global.[23] On April 11, it was confirmed that KKR had agreed to buy a 30% stake in FGS Global that valued the company at about $1.4 billion. As part of the deal, existing investor Golden State Capital will sell its entire stake to KKR.[24][25]


As of 2023, WPP owned 57.4% of FGS Global. Golden Gate Capital owned 40% of Sard Verbinnen & Co., and holds a small stake in FGS Global following the merger. About 40% of the company's employees are shareholders, of which 25.9% were FGH employees.[1]


The Glover Park Group was founded in June 2001 by former White House and Democratic campaign officials Michael Feldman, Carter Eskew, Joe Lockhart and Chip Smith.[26][27] Based in Washington, D.C., the consultancy assisted companies with their legislative goals using television advertising and public relations.[28] In November 2011, Glover Park was acquired by WPP. At the time, the firm had $60 million in annual revenue.[26][29]

Sard Verbinnen & Co. was founded in 1992 by George Sard and Paul Verbinnen. The firm managed deals, investor relations, and crises. As of 2021, the company had more than 200 employees.[30]

Hering Schuppener was founded in 1995 by Ralf Hering and Bernd Schuppener and headquartered in Düsseldorf, Germany.[31][32] The firm assisted with capital market communication including acquisitions, mergers, and restructuring, and advised clients on crisis public relations, reputation issues, and political communication.[33][34]


  1. ^ a b c Larkin, Ewan (14 June 2022). "Combined Finsbury Glover Hering, Sard Verbinnen rebrands as FGS Global". PR Week. Retrieved 15 March 2023.
  2. ^ a b "Finsbury". www.holmesreport.com. Retrieved 1 March 2016.
  3. ^ a b "Finsbury Glover Hering". fgh.com. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  4. ^ Kellaway, Lucy (12 August 2011). "The networker". Financial Times. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  5. ^ Drolet, Danielle (19 July 2011). "WPP agencies merge to form RLM Finsbury". www.prweek.com. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  6. ^ "WPP merges Finsbury and RLM". Financial Times. 20 July 2011. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  7. ^ a b Bradley, Diana (1 April 2014). "RLM Finsbury picks Gross to succeed Montgomery as CEO". www.prweek.com. Retrieved 5 July 2024.
  8. ^ Bradley, Diana (2 February 2017). "Finsbury shifts Michael Gross to vice chair; Paul Holmes to North America CEO". www.prweek.com. Retrieved 5 July 2024.
  9. ^ Billy Kenber and Murad Ahmed (12 November 2012). "PR firm of Oligarch Alisher Usmanov cleaned up his entry in Wikipedia". The Times. Archived from the original on 13 November 2012. Retrieved 15 March 2023.
  10. ^ Matthew Sparkes (12 November 2012). "Finsbury edited Alisher Usmanov's Wikipedia page". The Telegraph. Retrieved 15 March 2023.
  11. ^ Greg Hazley. "RLM Apologizes for Wikipedia Scrub - November 12, 2012". www.odwyerpr.com. Retrieved 15 March 2023.
  12. ^ Bradley, Diana (17 September 2014). "RLM Finsbury rebrands to underscore global ambitions". www.prweek.com. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  13. ^ "Finsbury Launches 'Workforce Return' Service". PRWeek. 10 June 2020.
  14. ^ "Finsbury Glover Hering Adds Two MDs Pan European Team". PRWeek. 13 July 2021.
  15. ^ a b c "Finsbury Glover Hering Names Global Leadership After Merger". PRovoke Media. 11 January 2021.
  16. ^ "News of Firms: Finsbury Glover Hering Debuts". O'Dwyers PR.
  17. ^ "Hering Schuppener schafft neue globale Kommunikationsberatung". Handelsblatt. 7 July 2020.
  18. ^ "Finsbury Glover Hering fusioniert ein weiteres Mal – nun mit dem US-Konkurrenten". Handelsblatt. 13 October 2021.
  19. ^ "Finsbury Glover Hering and Sard Verbinnen & Co to merge, creating global strategic communications leader". WPP. 13 October 2021. Retrieved 5 July 2024.
  20. ^ "FGS expandiert in die Niederlande". PRReport. 13 September 2022.
  21. ^ "FGS Dominated 2022 Global M&A Rankings; Prosek And Lambert Surge". PRovoke Media. 22 January 2023.
  22. ^ "Kreab y FGS Global lideran la asesoría de comunicación en operaciones en España, con 12.354 y 9.431 millones". Forbes Spain. 19 January 2023.
  23. ^ Jolly, Jasper (6 April 2023). "KKR in talks to buy stake in public relations company FGS Global". The Guardian. Retrieved 8 April 2023.
  24. ^ Vinn, Milana (11 April 2023). "KKR buys stake in communications firm FGS Global". Reuters. Retrieved 11 April 2023.
  25. ^ "KKR Invests in Leading Strategic Advisory and Communications Firm, FGS Global". media.kkr.com. Retrieved 11 April 2023.
  26. ^ a b Allen, Mike (29 November 2011). "WPP buys Glover Park". Politico.
  27. ^ Sudhaman, Arun (29 November 2011). "Glover Park Acquired By WPP". Provoke Media.
  28. ^ Birnbaum, Jeffrey H. (8 September 2004). "Lobbyists Take Leave to Advise Kerry Campaign". Washington Post.
  29. ^ Ho, Catherine (29 November 2011). "WPP acquires Glover Park Group". Washington Post.
  30. ^ Lombardo, Cara (13 October 2021). "PR Firm Sard Verbinnen to Merge With Finsbury Glover Hering". Washington Post.
  31. ^ "Aus Finsbury Glover Hering wird FGS Global". www.prreport.de (in German).
  32. ^ Bold, Ben (21 February 2018). "Hering Schuppener founder and global financial PR luminary Ralf Herring dies". PR Week.
  33. ^ Magazin, FINANCE (19 March 2018). "Folker Dries wird neuer Geschäftsführer bei Hering Schuppener". FINANCE (in German).
  34. ^ "Zusammenschluss: Hering Schuppener schafft neue globale Kommunikationsberatung". www.handelsblatt.com (in German).