The Springbok Group is growing fast. At the end of last year, Springbok acquired Dutch digital agencies Yourzine and Searchresult. Managing these newcomers' integration is one reason why Springbok recruited Sammy Colson to serve as co-CEO alongside Kim Verhaeghen. After 7 years at Yadera and Teamleader, Sammy returns to the agency world where he was active before moving on to the SaaS world. In his welcome email to the Springbok team, he describes it as coming home.
Sammy Colson's arrival is another step in realising the Springbok Group's ambition: to become the strongest digital agency in the Benelux by creating meaningful data-driven experiences for national and international clients. Sammy had been a shareholder since the acquisition of Rise + Shine in 2019. On 1 March 2021, he has now stepped into an active role as co-CEO. With this change, Springbok Group has someone at the helm who has always viewed clear and transparent business management as a critical success factor.
Focus on efficiency
"In my management approach, the focus is on efficiency and data as the engine for an organisation's growth. This vision comes straight from the SaaS world," Sammy explains. "I want to use data to look at what is really happening in an agency. From that knowledge, you can then set objectives, streamline processes and fine-tune reporting. That is crucial, especially if you are working with a private equity partner. The communication sector lags behind in this respect, and at Springbok, I want to show that we can do things differently."
Founder of Yadera
Sammy's management vision is a direct result of his experiences at Yadera, a business management application focused on advertising agencies, digital agencies and IT companies — which he started with a partner in 2014. The idea for Yadera matured when he was managing partner at Emakina/Direct, where he began his agency career in 2009.
"I felt that for the day-to-day management of the agency, we were not working with useful tools," says Sammy. After discussions with the co-founder of Yadera, the concept of all-in-one software that focused on the digital communications industry's realities and provided real insights grew. The Yadera concept caught on. Meanwhile, Yadera is the most widely used application in the industry and was added by Teamleader to its portfolio in 2019.
Building a stable and integrated Group
When the Springbok Group came knocking with the co-CEO offer, Sammy saw this as the moment to put the insights he has gained into practice."Thanks to Yadera, I came into contact with hundreds of agencies. From that, I developed a vision of how to manage an agency. This vision is what I now want to roll out at Springbok. I have always said that one day I would go back to the agency world. I have known Springbok for many years now and Indufin, the private equity partner. They are the right parties for me to complete the circle."
Kim Verhaeghen is particularly pleased with the arrival of Sammy as co-CEO. "The buy and build strategy of Springbok Group with our private equity partner Indufin is not only focused on fast growth. We want to create a stable, integrated group that adds value for our team members and clients. Sammy's knowledge and experience will help us achieve this. Moreover, this stability and integration will create a pleasanter and better workplace for the team. That is also crucial for a strong group where people are central."
Sammy Colson bio
- 1978, Vilvoorde
- Started in 2009 in the communication sector as Managing Partner of Emakina/Direct
- Started in 2014 with Yadera, an all-in-one business management application for (digital) agencies
- Sold Yadera to Teamleader in 2019
- Started 1 March 2021 as co-CEO of the Springbok Group
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About Springbok Group
Springbok Group is the digital group that encompasses Springbok, Adeptiv, YourZine, Searchresult, Rise + Shine and Unides. The various agencies have one common mission: to help clients develop and grow their digital business. They do this by designing, building and scaling digital programmes that turn customer journeys into meaningful experiences that make brands bigger and stronger. Every day, Springbok Group puts this mission into practice for national and international clients like Bridgestone, Daikin, ENGIE, Burger King, Albert Heijn, Brico, KPN, Efteling, Rituals Manutan, NLZiet and T-Mobile, from its offices in Mechelen (HQ), Brussels, Amsterdam, Utrecht and 's Hertogenbosch. The team currently consists of 280 people.