The announcement follows a deal funded by global private equity house, Bain Capital.
Acquiring Mercer’s UK pensions and US health and benefits administration businesses, Aptia will manage benefits for more than seven million people across 1,100 companies.
Having already led Aptia through a brand positioning programme, Smoking Gun is currently spearheading media relations and social media, with a focus in the UK and US, as well as a recruitment drive in India.
Aptia is led by a highly respected and experienced management team that includes Bala Viswanathan, CEO (pictured right) and Dominic Burke, chairman (pictured left) both of whom have worked at both Jardine Lloyd Thompson (JLT) and Marsh McLennan and have a proven track record of building businesses that deliver.
Viswanathan said: “It is time for a new way of thinking. While we’re inheriting the largest pension portfolio in the UK and the employee and benefits business in the US, we’re also committed to bringing a fresh perspective and demonstrating our genuine enthusiasm for administration.
“From Day One, our sole focus is on providing class-leading support.
“Smoking Gun embraces brands with a challenger mentality, and with the team’s intelligent and disruptive approach to B2B communications, they share our vision to turn away from the formulaic to revolutionise the experience for our clients.”
Caroline Aspinall, Smoking Gun’s commercial director and head of B2B, said: “As our B2B division continues to go from strength to strength, the appointment by Aptia marks a key milestone as we guide the global comms strategy to successfully launch this monumental start-up.
“Working with brands that are shaking up their categories is our passion, and Aptia’s technical expertise combined with its continual investment in strengthening client relationships is a very compelling proposition for 2024.”
Aptia joins Smoking Gun’s portfolio which includes B2B retail insights brand, Reapp, as well as brand giants PG Tips, Interflora and the NHS.