In an industry increasingly defined by mergers and acquisitions, BBK Worldwide is bucking the trend by creating ownership opportunities from within.
Celebrating 30 years, Newton, Mass.-based BBK remains one of the only independent and self-funded patient recruitment agencies. Now BBK has named four additional principals who, together, will assume a minority ownership in the company.
All long-serving employees, Matthew Kibby, Rob Laurens, Liz Ritchie and Matthew Stumm have played key roles in shaping the company's success. As principals, they will partner with BBK's founding principals Joan F. Bachenheimer and Bonnie A. Brescia to maintain the company's core mission and values while driving growth in key market areas.
"These four individuals have made unyielding contributions to BBK over the years—contributions that have brought innovation and definition to the patient recruitment marketplace as a whole," said Bachenheimer. "Their new roles will allow for expanded growth in critical business areas, ensuring that current and future customers benefit from the most strategic and sophisticated thinking in the industry."
Each newly named principal will focus efforts on expanding his or her current management area. Matthew Stumm will drive innovation for Agency320, BBK's partner company for creative and media services. Rob Laurens will advance patient recruitment training and industry best practices. Liz Ritchie will continue to manage corporate and legal services. Matthew Kibby will expand and refine product offerings from BBK's technology partner TCN Technologies and its hallmark product TrialCentralNet.
Companies often turn to mergers and acquisitions as a corporate strategy for creating growth, however, often at the expense of innovation. BBK's move represents a deliberate shift from this industry trend.
"Over the past 10 years, BBK has been approached by several different organizations interested in taking an outside investment in BBK," said Brescia. "We've taken a different approach that values the commitment and dedication of our employees. Our business model reflects our commitment to, and appreciation for, our employees and for their hard work and investment. This dynamic model creates opportunities to expand ownership from within."
BBK created a new corporate structure that also has the potential to seamlessly expand ownership opportunities to other deserved employees within the company—ensuring retention of key talent and the viability of the company moving forward.