Ghent agency continues to grow by expanding its services and entering Antwerp.
Ghent, September 28, 2023 – The Ghent-based digital performance marketing agency Ants Connect has acquired Antwerp’s Cosmos Collective. This growing enterprise is now establishing a presence in Antwerp, with an office on Mechelsesteenweg, and significantly expanding its range of services.
“The growth marketing experts at Cosmos Collective complement our performance marketers perfectly, making this a win-win story for Ants and our clients,” says Jacob Verroken, CEO of Ants Connect. The acquisition will be official on October 1st.
Ants Connect is currently actively seeking to strengthen its team of experts.
Jacob Verroken (42) and Sam Stals (34) founded Ants Connect in 2017 in response to the frustration prevailing in the market regarding the methodology of traditional agencies. Their approach was immediately well-received, and since then, the agency, headquartered in the Ghent Eskimofabriek, has been on a fast track to success. Revenue grew tenfold in the five years following its first fiscal year, reaching 1.37 million euros in 2022. The target for 2023 is set at 2 million euros (+46%). The client portfolio also experienced exponential growth.
Ants Connect is responsible for maintaining and enhancing the online presence of major brands such as Degroof Petercam, Helan, Neckermann, Accent, Eneco, and even NATO. This year, clients like Come a Casa, Imec, Modulyss, and Glowi were added to the list. The number of employees has grown accordingly to a team of 18 performance marketers. They manage online media budgets of around 1 million euros monthly for their clients across various digital channels.
“We are particularly proud of what we are achieving with our team,” says CEO Jacob Verroken. “We wanted to focus on experimentation and growth marketing, and the acquisition of Cosmos Collective fits into that strategy. We share the same focus on results, the same high-quality and dedicated approach, and the same no-nonsense style, which makes us highly complementary and benefits our clients.”
Data serves as the foundation for every strategy, action plan, and piece of advice at Ants. A digital strategy is developed and translated into a concrete action plan based on numbers, not gut feelings. Ants primarily focuses on the stages of awareness (being known), acquisition (attracting users), activation (ensuring they do the right things), and retention (making sure they return).
“Cosmos Collective is a pure-play growth marketing agency with a strong emphasis on experimentation, testing, and fine-tuning campaigns, websites, and applications. Especially in the area of activation, this makes us an even stronger team than before.”
“The connection has been there from the beginning,” says Frederik Vandenweghe, co-founder of Cosmos Collective in 2020. “We already collaborated on several clients, each from our respective expertise. By joining forces, we can continue to serve our existing and new clients in Antwerp up close and offer them even more expertise.”
Frederik will join Ants as a shareholder and continue to manage the Antwerp office.
Growth to a team of 35
With a total of 24 digital marketers, doubling the number of employees compared to the beginning of this year, Ants Connect is becoming one of the largest digital performance marketing agencies in Flanders. By the end of 2024, Ants Connect aims to grow to a team of 35. Currently, they are specifically looking for a Senior Digital Performance Marketer and a Marketing Automation Specialist with experience.
“We will continue to search the market for strong individuals because people make the difference,” says Jacob Verroken. “Our vision on this is clear: There is no such thing as strong agencies, only strong people. Additionally, having a presence in Antwerp offers Ants Connect new opportunities for recruiting experts.”
About Ants Connect
Ants Connect is a digital performance marketing agency with a unique structure that places people at the center. With four experienced partners, Ants Connect guarantees consistent quality and direct communication. At Ants, there are no account managers or project managers, only performance marketers. In 2022, Ants Connect became a part of the Craftzing Group.
For more information: www.antsconnect.be
About Cosmos Collective
Cosmos Collective is a growth marketing agency specializing in experimentation. By mapping and analyzing customer behavior, Cosmos Collective optimizes the customer experience through experimentation. It’s this focus on customer centricity that leads to sustainable growth.h