Dare (UK)


Selected Dare advertising

The new Dare was formed in Autumn 2010 from the merger of what was already one of London's most admired digital shops, also named Dare, with traditional advertising agency MCBD. The resulting business aimed to offer a completely integrated offering, combining cutting edge interactive skills with award-winning creative advertising. It could also call upon the resources of other specialised marketing services units then owned by ultimate parentVision 7 International (formerly Cossette). However performance following the merger was much weaker than expected, and the problems of integrating the two businesses led to the loss of several significant clients and senior managers during 2011. The Dare brand was later extended to Canada with the rebranding of two of Cossette's digital units in that market. However the sale of Vision 7's North American assets in 2014 left UK operations such as Dare as effective orphans in search of a new owner. Dare was eventually acquired in 2015 by little-known digital group Oliver.

Recent stories from Adbrands Weekly Update:

Adbrands Weekly Update 8th Oct 2015: London agency Dare, orphaned by the acquisition of Cossette and related Vision7 agencies in North America by BlueFocus, has finally found a buyer. It was acquired for an undisclosed sum by Oliver Group, the privately owned digital marketing agency led by Simon Martin. Dare will retain separate branding, working alongside Oliver from the latter's offices in the City. The deal does not include Dare's other UK siblings, direct marketer Elvis or branding agency Identica.

Adbrands Weekly Update 2nd July 2015: Canadian group Vision 7, now owned by BlueFocus, completed the renaming of the two digital shops which have been operating under the Dare name. The Toronto office became Camp Jefferson a few months ago; Dare Vancouver now becomes Camp Pacific. The UK agency Dare is now entirely separate, still owned for now by private equity firm Mill Road, along with what were previously Vision 7's international operations.

Adbrands Weekly Update 18th Dec 2014: Chinese marketing group BlueFocus was confirmed as the successful bidder for Vision7 North America, the parent entity for Canada's top Francophone agency Cossette, also a major force in English-speaking advertising, and the local offices of Citizen Relations and digital agency Dare. That business was put up for sale earlier this year by private equity owner Mill Road Capital. The price tag was quoted at $210m. BlueFocus will control an 85% stake in the business, with the remaining 15% shared between senior management. The Chinese group also vowed to support the continuing expansion of Cossette into the US and the growth of its Citzen PR operations there. The deal is the biggest step yet by BlueFocus into Western markets. The sale doesn't include the European operations of Vision7, including Dare UK, Elvis and Identica. These will continue to operate independently.  

Adbrands Weekly Update 29th May 2014: Ads Of The Week "Violence Is Violence". Dare London's new PSA for domestic violence charity ManKind will make men and women alike question their own assumptions about what constitutes spousal abuse, focusing on a largely ignored aspect of a worryingly common problem. The difference between the public's reactions to the two different scenarios is really quite startling. Very clever, very effective, and a strong return to form for Dare's London office.

Adbrands Weekly Update 27th Feb 2014: Ads Of The Week "Vision Taken Seriously". Well-chosen music can make a good ad great, and a great ad perfect. Roberta Flack's "First Time I Ever Saw Your Face" can be a bit mawkish on its own, but it's just right for this hypnotic journey into emotional inner space from Dare London for UK opticians Vision Express. We're not quite sure what it all means but we're happy to sit back and enjoy the show.

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