MMGY Global diversifies into outdoor recreation space and bolsters Canadian operations
MMGY Global, the world’s leading integrated travel and hospitality marketing firm, announced today that it has acquired Origin, an award-winning, outdoor-focused, digitally driven creative, content and branding agency. The firm, based in Whistler, Canada, will become known as MMGY Origin. It was founded by female trailblazers Danielle Kristmanson and Marie-Josée (MJ) Legault more than 20 years ago.
MMGY Global’s ongoing strategy is to grow its global footprint and ability to service existing and prospective clients worldwide. The deal is significant for MMGY Global as it transcends further on the periphery of travel with this new expertise in outdoor sport, lifestyle and recreation brands and boosts its Canadian operations. With the addition of Origin’s Whistler, Montreal and Vermont locations, MMGY Global will now have over 500 employees and operate in 16 markets globally: Austin, Chicago, Denver, Detroit, Fort Myers, Kansas City, London, Los Angeles, Miami, Montreal, New York City, San Francisco, Vancouver, Vermont (Burlington), Washington, D.C., and Whistler.
Origin takes a fresh approach to digital storytelling and has provided strategy for many leading brands that are transforming outdoor recreation and travel with tech and progressive innovation. Notable brands include Destination Canada, L.L. Bean, Vail Resorts, Tourism Whistler, Taos Ski Valley, Park City, Jay Peak Resort, lululemon, Smartwool® and Fleet Feet®. Origin chooses to partner with outdoor brands that cater to skiers, cyclists and outdoor enthusiasts, and inspire people to get outside responsibly.
“Origin represents a unique addition to our global company that differentiates our product portfolio and positions us in a niche segment that connects travel with active lifestyle,” said President and Incoming CEO Katie Briscoe. “We couldn’t have found a partner more aligned with our mission of inspiring people to go places than Origin, who inspires people to play outside.”
Danielle Kristmanson and Marie-Josée (MJ) Legault will remain an integral part of the business for the MMGY Origin brand. MJ will serve as Partner & Managing Director, and Danielle as Partner & Executive Creative Director. They will work with the MMGY Global senior management team to grow the agency’s capabilities and extend its services across other areas of the company.
“MMGY Global is the perfect fit for Origin. Their investment will propel our business to the next level as we continue to offer our outdoor strategy and storytelling expertise to global brands,” said MJ Legault, Partner & Managing Director of MMGY Origin. “Being able to combine our team’s passion for active lifestyle with MMGY’s passion for travel and their resources as a fully integrated global marketing firm is going to be a powerful combination.”
Origin is the eleventh acquisition by MMGY Global since private equity firm Peninsula Capital Partners made a significant equity investment in the company in February 2016. The investment further strengthens the company’s aggressive acquisition strategy, which includes global expansion and a commitment to integration across all travel marketing channels.
MMGY Global was advised on the transaction by Armanino, LLP on financial matters and by Dentons Canada LLP and Foley & Lardner, LLP on legal matters. Origin was advised on the transaction by Aird & Berlis, LLP and Reid Smith on legal and tax matters. They were represented by M+A Advisors, Barney Inc.
About MMGY Global
MMGY Global is the world’s leading integrated marketing firm specializing in the travel, hospitality and entertainment industries. With operations across the world, the award-winning organization maintains a global communications practice in all marketing channels, serving many of the world’s premier travel and tourism brands. As a company dedicated to the travel industry, MMGY Global strives to create a connected, inclusive and peaceful world by promoting travel as a cultural bridge of understanding. For more information, visit mmgyglobal.com.
Origin is an outdoor-focused, digitally-driven creative, content and branding agency. Founded more than 20 years ago, the agency has worked with a multitude of prominent outdoor brands such as Whistler Blackcomb, L.L. Bean, lululemon, Smartwool, The North Face, and many more. With offices in Montreal and Whistler, as well as a U.S. subsidiary based in Vermont, Origin provides a bilingual and suite of capabilities to the outdoor brands it helps succeed and grow in both Canada and the U.S. Subscribe to Origin’s “Insights On The Outdoors” monthly newsletter at originoutside.com/newsletter.
MMGY Global/MMGY NJF