Dublin-based social media agency Simply Zesty has just announced news of a €500,000 investment from The Oxford Research Agency (TORA) for a minority stake in the firm.
Celebrating its one-year anniversary earlier this week, the investment now values the social media company at €1m.
With clients including Vodafone, Universal Pictures, Nokia and The Body Shop, Simply Zesty was co-founded by chef Niall Harbison and social media marketing consultant Lauren Fisher in May 2009. TORA is a long-standing market research agency founded in 1982, whose repertoire includes retail and shopper insight, social research and simulated test markets.
"This is a huge vote of confidence for our young company and we are delighted to be partnering up with such a well-established and reputable company," said co-founder Niall Harbison.
"We are hoping to add a new level of measurement to our social media offerings while also helping TORA to add a new level of social media to their research capabilities. This is a match made in heaven that will hopefully help both companies to grow significantly in the years to come," says Harbison.
Fisher said the investment was a natural fit for the two firms: "We think that both areas (social media and social research) can take key learnings from each other that will progress the two disciplines."
"TORA already helps its clients to launch new products that are four times more successful than the industry average. Both TORA and Simply Zesty believe in the power of listening to consumers, and its ability to improve in-market success rates further with better brands, products, packs and higher customer satisfaction," said Chris Sinclair, CEO of TORA.
By Marie Boran
Photo: Niall Harbison and Lauren Fisher, co-founders of social media firm Simply Zesty