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Lewis Silkin advises Sideshow Group on its significant investment from Waterland Private Equity

02 March 2021

Lewis Silkin has advised Sideshow Group, the award-winning independent digital agency on its significant investment from Waterland Private Equity (“Waterland”) to support its ambitious growth plans.

Sideshow Group aims to become a global leader in evidence-driven digital communications. The partnership will support Sideshow’s vision by accelerating investment in services that deliver meaningful and measurable impact to its clients, and by helping retain and attract the best people in the industry.

Sideshow Group offers clients a highly-connected family of specialist agencies including Vertical Leap, Thinking Juice, Bunnyfoot and Conversion, that together provide modern digital services ranging from experience design to conversion rate optimisation which ultimately drives traffic and revenue growth for brands. Sideshow’s evidence-driven proposition enables clients to make informed and data-driven decisions that supercharge their digital transformation and marketing. Customer-centricity is the cornerstone of the Group’s approach. 

Today, Sideshow employs over 250 employees across six offices in the UK, including London, Bournemouth and Sheffield. The Group has enjoyed tremendous revenue, client and headcount growth since it was founded in 2010, driven by organic growth as well as a proven acquisition strategy. Sideshow serves a diversified base of around 350 customers including well-known brands such as BT, KFC, HSBC, Barbour, Facebook and Amazon.

Waterland will support Sideshow Group to sustain its successful acquisition strategy, with follow-on funding available to acquire and partner with other high quality digital agencies in order to provide new and differentiated capabilities to Sideshow’s clients.

The Lewis Silkin team was led by corporate partner, Jo Evans, with support from tax partner, Matthew Rowbotham, corporate senior associate, Francesca Cunningham, and corporate associates, Mariem Al-Khafaji and Joe Lythgoe.

Commenting on the deal, Tony Hill, Group CEO and Founder of Sideshow said:

“It has been a huge pleasure working with Jo and the team at Lewis Silkin. The advice and support we received was smart, clear and extremely helpful. Despite all the late nights and hard work, everyone at Lewis Silkin remained positive and professional. Above all that, Jo, Fran, Joe, Mariem and Matt are such nice people, and I would like to thank them very much.”

Commenting on the deal, Jo Evans said:

“It was a pleasure acting for the shareholders of Sideshow, having acted for Sideshow on the acquisition of Conversion last year. The partnership with Waterland, one of the private equity industry’s best-performing firms with an outstanding record of supporting high-growth digital agencies is incredibly exciting for Sideshow, and I look forward to watching the business continue to thrive”.

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