International talent network Working Not Working has acquired The Backscratchers, a similar agency based in the UK that sources creative freelancers for commercial projects. The merge will see WNW absorb The Backscratchers’ business and forms part of the company’s expansion across the pond.
The Backscratchers was founded in 2012 as an agency of self-penned “fixers” that works on projects across all disciplines, from events to campaigns and many miscellaneous projects in between. Like WNW, it worked with big brands – such as a Red Bull, Spotify, Unilever and Google – to source a team of freelance creatives for each job. This follows WNW’s larger scale business model, which hosts an invite-only bank of 35,000 creatives with portfolios spanning media, advertising, production and tech, and sources them for projects with brands and agencies like Apple, Droga5, Vice, Wieden+Kennedy and Facebook.
WNW is known for its annual list of the top 50 companies creatives want to work for, a survey of its freelancers in which creatives vote for their most coveted clients based on culture and work output.
This acquisition will see WNW expand to encompass all of The Backscratchers’ network and projects; likewise The Backscratchers’ clients will now have access to WNW’s bank of creatives. All new projects will be handled by the WNW team with support from The Backscratchers team, while existing projects are completed. The Backscratchers co-founder Jody Orsborn said in a statement: “We believe that Working Not Working has our same dedication to transparency, quality and ‘good people doing good things together.’ It’s the perfect next step for our business.”