LONDON — The Communications Store’s founders, Julietta Dexter and Daniel Marks, have joined forces with former Guardian Media Group CEO David Pemsel to launch a new PR and brand-building agency, ScienceMagic.Inc.

All 115 TCS staff and the agency’s fashion, beauty and luxury lifestyle client portfolio, which includes Versace, Victoria Beckham Beauty and Goop, are integrated into the new company with immediate effect.

Pemsel (pictured, right) will lead the new business – which has bases in London and New York – as CEO, while TCS chief creative officer and partner Marks (left) will become chief magic officer, overseeing creative output. Dexter becomes chief growth and purpose officer. The three partners are all shareholders in ScienceMagic.Inc.

The new venture has been set up to “partner with brands to define and articulate their purpose, develop their commercial strategies and build their digital interfaces” and to “harness the power of community, content and commerce to build the next generation of direct to consumer businesses around role models and talent.”

As CEO of Guardian Media Group until January this year, Pemsel was responsible for the digital transformation of the business that resulted in the group going from a forecast loss of $100m in 2015 to its first operating profit for 25 years in 2019.

Before joining the media group in 2011 as chief commercial officer, Pemsel was group marketing director of ITV. He had also been a partner at Elizabeth Murdoch’s Shine Entertainment, where he launched a branded content division, and was a senior advertising exec at St Luke’s and Ogilvy & Mather.

Pemsel said: “There now has to be a new answer to the challenges of building meaningful relationships with consumers in this complex and dynamic world. ScienceMagic.Inc is grounded in three core capabilities of strategic science, creative magic and digital experience to grow real and enduring value for both brands and people of influence.

“Established brands urgently need immediate solutions to make the shift in a post-covid world, from offline to a new physical, digital, mobile and virtual world. Personality and purpose are the future of all brands and all consumers are looking for inspiration in a new world of genuine engagement and entertainment.”

Dexter founded TCS 25 years ago and in April this year published her first book, ‘Good Company: How to Build a Business Without Losing Your Values.’ She said: “The crisis we’re all in has focused us single-mindedly on radically reinventing the future of brand, talent and business building. I have always believed that purpose has to be the foundation of any business success. No brand or individual will succeed unless they can articulate their 'reason for being' well, beyond financial success.”

Marks started his career in fashion PR, working at Aurelia PR and then with Donatella Versace’s PR team in Milan and as head of European PR for Tommy Hilfiger, before joining The Communications Store in 2002.

He said: “I have always believed in the magic power of great brands – that extraordinary feeling of connection when you experience exceptional creativity, desire and beauty. ScienceMagic.Inc’s ambition is to bring real meaning and purpose to our connections with brands and people. We champion the magic behind our interaction with brands and people and empower that magic with science.

“In our role as brand guardians we use data, AI and technology to amplify great creative thinking, develop exceptional consumer entertainment platforms and build sustainable commercial businesses.”