Grapevine Designs And Blue 2 Announce Merger

Financial Terms Of Deal Not Disclosed

Grapevine Designs And Blue 2 Announce MergerKansas City-based Grapevine Designs (asi/212829) and St. Louis-based Blue 2 (asi/141948) plan to merge operations, the companies have announced. Financial terms of the deal, which is expected to be completed by June 30, were not disclosed. The firms will maintain their current office locations and staffs, but will operate going forward under the Grapevine Designs name.

"Although it's sad to retire the Blue 2 name, our team is thrilled to join forces with Grapevine Designs," says Jane Beth McCarty, president of Blue 2. "With their unique design and marketing acumen, Grapevine will have an immediate impact on our customer base. We had been looking for a partner to help us grow and we feel we share the same philosophy as Grapevine."

Blue 2, which has a niche in the education and financial markets, has enjoyed particular success with its fulfillment programs, McCarty says. Meanwhile, Grapevine, which employs a staff of 22 full-time workers, including seven salespeople, has a history of serving clients in the health care and pharmaceutical fields. "I feel like we've positioned our company to grow substantially," says Janie Gaunce, CEO of Grapevine Designs. "This is a perfect match for us and we'll have great resources to work with."

Through the deal, Grapevine will join Activate! Promotions + Marketing (asi/141964) as divisions of business management firm A Brand Company. Previously, A Brand Company held a minority share of Blue 2 and now will have a share in Grapevine. As a merged company, Grapevine will have additional market coverage in Wichita, St. Louis, Louisville, Seattle and Red Bank, NJ.

Blue 2, McCarty says, produced $5 million in sales last year. According to Gaunce, Grapevine generated 2012 sales of $7.5 million, a 12% gain over 2011. "We're working now with people who really understand our creative agency approach and Grapevine's differentiation in the market," Gaunce says. "We're really excited."