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Wasserman boosts action sports presence by acquiring rival agency

Sports, entertainment and lifestyle company Wasserman Media Group (WMG) has agreed a deal to acquire its main rival in the action sports sphere, The Sports Syndicate.

Based in Newport Beach, California, The Sports Syndicate is a leading action sports and Olympic athlete management and marketing agency. Its clients include snowboarders Mark McMorris (pictured) and Torstein Horgmo and motocross legend Ryan Villopoto.

Writing in a blog post, WMG managing partner Steve Astephen said: “We are very excited about this acquisition because it brings together the industry’s two leading powerhouses. We now have nearly 300 top action sports and Olympic athletes across 45 sports on our roster, all under the same roof.

“There has never been a more important time in our industry than now to consolidate our businesses like this. The action sports landscape is maturing and with evolutions in the social and media world, more and more athletes now require resources that build their brands beyond traditional marketing platforms. It’s not just about putting their name on a signature shoe or board; today’s athletes want to take control of and capitalise on their brand, acting as the creator, writer, influencer, director and producer of their own content.”

Astephen added: “There is a good reason why The Sports Syndicate has been our biggest competitor in the industry for years: they have consistently done solid work on behalf of their clients, in turn challenging us at Wasserman to always bring our A-game every time. Now, we have the unique opportunity to combine the expertise, passion and drive each of our agents possesses with an equally strong and committed group of industry experts to enhance our complete, one-stop shop for athletes. On top of that, The Sports Syndicate’s strength in the Olympics space opens new doors for both our agencies to expand that area heading into the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio.”