The Story Lab parent Dentsu Aegis Network has bought into UK-based digital talent management firm Gleam Futures.
Dentsu plans to use its entertainment content unit, Story Lab, to open new avenues for Gleam in new markets and expands its global offering.
The Story Lab has made an impact on international distribution in the past year, acquiring rights to Ninja Warrior, opening offices and hiring several high profile executives.
Seven-year-old Gleam is based in London. It represents more than 40 major digital-first talents, including Zoella, Jim Chapman, Tanya Burr and Pixiwoo.
The plan is to give these individuals and groups access to deeper commercial partnerships and help them with cross-channel syndication and reach.
For Dentsu, the investment will improve its original entertainment development, distribution and marketing capabilities.
Gleam will remain based at its current headquarters in Charlotte Street, London. CEO and founder Dominic Smales and his team will remain in their roles, continuing to represent the entire talent roster independently in each operating territory.
“This partnership will give our roster unrivalled access to the highly populated and fast developing markets around the world, as well as strengthening our already established representation in the UK and US,” said Smales.
“We will continue to develop the careers of our entire roster by helping them build their intellectual property way ahead of the traditional talent management trajectory.”
“The way people are consuming content has fundamentally changed as more people turn to trusted online content producers,” said Tracy De Groose, CEO of Dentsu Aegis Network UK & Ireland.
“This is the digital economy in action and few businesses have led from the forefront of the digital talent revolution like Gleam Futures. Its roster transcends the vast audience they command across platforms like YouTube.
“We now have a massive opportunity to support the growth of this truly unique talent business by creating powerful collisions between content, creative, and media distribution.”