Crosby marketing unit buys Prendergast PR firm

April 22, 1993|By Angela Winter Ney | Angela Winter Ney,Staff writer

Crosby Communications, a full-services marketing agency in Annapolis, has acquired the public relations firm of Marlene Prendergast & Associates.

It is the first such acquisition since Crosby opened in 1973.

Ms. Prendergast's firm, also in Annapolis, will become part of Crosby on May 3.

Her company, started in 1987, has more than a dozen clients, most of whom she expects to make the switch to Crosby with her.

Crosby has more than 25 clients in the Annapolis-Baltimore-Washington, D.C. area.

"This is the first time we've ever acquired a competitor, so to speak," Mr. Crosby said. "It came about through long discussions with Marlene, because of her desires as much as ours."

Ms. Prendergast called the move a "great opportunity for me and my clients. Crosby Communications has a strong team of diversified marketing professionals who have earned a blue-chip reputation for getting results."

The acquisition of Ms. Prendergast's agency is part of Crosby's plan to expand into a "major marketing force in the region," said Mr. Crosby.

"Marlene brings us more than clients. She brings . . . special talents in marketing nonprofit and health-care clients, a niche where we continue to grow," he said.

Crosby already has health care clients, including Anne Arundel Medical Center and the county centers of Maryland General Hospital.

"That's not our only niche, but we're going to build that niche," Mr. Crosby said.

Ms. Prendergast has experience with health care clients, as well as having produced health care programs for cable TV and radio.

She has handled the design and implementation of marketing plans, media and government relations, public relations, advertising, market research, focus groups, surveys, direct mail, newsletters, brochures, events, fund-raising and community relations for nonprofit organizations, hospitals and health-care providers.

Crosby's client base includes real estate, financial services, high-tech firms, government agencies and general business clients, in addition to health care organizations.

Ms. Prendergast will become the marketing agency's 15th employee, with the title of senior account executive.

"In the Annapolis area, we're kind of the leading force in marketing. In Baltimore and Washington, D.C., we're sometimes the little guy," said Mr. Crosby, adding that the differing markets force Crosby to tailor its approach to customers.

"We have to focus on different strengths in different places," he said. "Ms. Prendergast will help us to do that."

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