rEvolution Acquires Detroit-Based Centigrade to Broaden Industry Expertise

rEvolution, the world’s largest independent sports marketing agency, has acquired Detroit-based integrated marketing agency Centigrade. The acquisition bolsters rEvolution’s current roster of global clients, joining others in the automotive, motorsports and lifestyle categories including Continental Tire, General Tire, Lucas Oil and Polaris. Specializing in marketing communications, public relations, experiential activation and motorsports, Centigrade boasts Lamborghini, Lotus, Bugatti, Alfa Romeo, RECARO Automotive, Charge Enterprises and Hagerty Drivers Foundation amongst its client portfolio. 

“At rEvolution, we center our business on a team of experts. Our people-first approach leads every aspect of our relationship with our clients and partners. The Centigrade team is aligned with us in this approach to their business, a critical factor in any acquisition,” said John Rowady, CEO and Founder, rEvolution. “And as a Detroit native, I am personally excited about investing in a city I love and expanding our presence in the auto industry and overall lifestyle and luxury categories.” 


With the acquisition, rEvolution will immediately broaden its fully integrated service model across strategy, creative, activation and management with Centigrade’s global service offerings and staff, led by industry leaders and co-founders Nick Matthews and Julie Barnard. In addition to its automotive and motorsports clients, rEvolution works across all major sports leagues and properties and is currently the Partnership Agency of Record for American Family Insurance (across MLS, MLB, NFL and Summerfest), as well as the lead agency for all of Chipotle’s gaming and esports activities.

“Since our founding in 2010, Centigrade has continued to grow in the marketing and public relations sectors. Joining the rEvolution team will expand our collective capabilities and client offerings exponentially,” said Nick Matthews, Chairman, Centigrade. “We look forward to a successful future as one rEvolution.”

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rEvolution’s acquisition of Centigrade also delivers a new Detroit location as the organization’s fourth office – joining the Chicago headquarters and offices in Indianapolis and London, UK. In addition to leadership roles for Julie Barnard and Nick Matthews, all current Centigrade staff will join rEvolution in their client relations, experiential, marketing and communications roles. The Centigrade business will operate under the rEvolution brand effective with the close of the transaction.

“This is a very exciting time for our two agencies,” said Julie Barnard, President, Centigrade. “As we come together, we see tremendous opportunity for our people and our clients. As I join rEvolution leadership, I am eager and excited to help integrate our organizations and set us up for continued growth.”

rEvolution’s continued expansion also affords opportunities for its subsidiaries, including REV/XP, an independent, fully integrated gaming and esports marketing agency, currently overseeing Chipotle’s gaming and esports strategy; as well as rEv YOUTH, the youth-focused marketing agency.    

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