DURANGO, CO (BRAIN)—Two of the outdoor industry’s best-recognized and successful public relations agencies, Verde PR & Consulting and Base Camp Communications, have merged. The new firm will retain the name Verde PR & Consulting.
Along with combined staffs and client rosters, the resulting firm offers expanded bandwidth and integrates the core services both agencies have offered for much of the last decade. Mike Geraci, founder and director of Base Camp Communications, joins Verde as a partner and serves as vice president, strategic development director. Verde business manager Claire Ninde is also a partner in the agency along with Verde founder Kristin Carpenter-Ogden, who will serve as president of the new company.
“Joining Base Camp Communications and Verde formalizes a collaborative relationship that’s been in place since the inception of both agencies,” said Carpenter-Ogden. “We go forward with a shared vision of bringing a highly innovative and creative approach to integrated brand communication, sharpening client branding and visibility while driving sales through traditional initiatives, digital and social opportunities, and everything in between.”
She said Geraci and his team bring expertise in social media and consumer outreach, honed working with clients such as Gregory and Backcountry.com. “Mike has really made his name pioneering social media in the outdoor and snow sports space, and was even so ahead of curve he had a hard time getting clients to understand what he was doing,” Carpenter-Ogden said. “We really hope to raise the bar on what we’re doing with each of our clients with social media.”
Geraci, who started his firm in 2001 around the same time as Carpenter-Ogden, said the two began merger talks in August and did four months of due diligence before pulling the trigger. He said as clients’ needs have become more diverse, they have looked to PR to do more. By combining strengths and capabilities in different areas, they can offer more to their clients, he added.
“Kristin and I have been friends for 12 years, and we’ve collaborated on a number of projects over that time, so this was a natural evolution,” Geraci said. “In exploring this partnership, we realized that each of our agencies brought different but complementary strengths to the table. By combining those strengths, we believe we’ve formed an agency comprising the best PR people working in our marketplaces today. We intend to raise the level of innovation from both companies even higher than it already is.”
Carpenter-Ogden and Geraci visited clients the week before Thanksgiving to explain the new relationship. Carpenter-Ogden said all clients have been notified and any conflicts have been addressed. Backcountry.com, SCARPA, Princeton Tec and Kona Bikes join Verde PR as clients. Former Base Camp clients Ryders Eyewear and Westcomb will no longer be represented due to overlap with Verde clients.
Verde PR & Consulting will be headquartered in its existing offices in Durango, Colorado, and the former Base Camp Communications office in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Along with Geraci, three Base Camp employees remain on board. The combined company now serves 24 clients and employs a staff of 14.