Portent Invests $1M In ‘Actual Labs’ To Develop Marketing Tech And Appoints New CEO

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Founder Ian Lurie becomes Principal Consultant and leads Portent’s newly launched Actual Labs; Steve Gahler appointed to CEO of the digital marketing agency and expands client services

Portent - Actual Labs

Portent, Inc. announced today that its Founder, Ian Lurie takes post as Principal Consultant and Agency Chairman after nearly two decades as the agency’s Chief Executive Officer. Steve Gahler takes the helm as CEO of the Seattle-based digital marketing agency, and is responsible for the expansion of marketing tools and services for blue chip clients such as Coca-Cola, Kate Spade, Juicy Couture and Princess Tours.

As Principal Consultant and Chairman of Portent, Lurie will continue to guide marketing strategies and share knowledge through mentorship programs and team trainings. He will also lead Portent’s newly launched Actual Labs, in which the agency has already made a strategic investment of $1 million to develop innovative marketing technologies for the industry. New disruptive marketing technologies from Actual Labs will begin to rollout to brands and agencies by mid-year.

“I’m grateful to have the opportunity to dedicate my time on what I’ve loved most about my time at Portent: teaching and technologies,” said Lurie. “But that wouldn’t be possible without the leadership and vision of Steve, who I trust will take the agency to new heights and expand our client services for the next generation of CMOs.”

Since 2012, Gahler has served as the agency’s President, having come from CBS Television, where he was Vice President and General Manager of the Seattle property. He was responsible for leading Portent’s double-digit revenue growth in both 2012 and 2013, and aims to fully expand the agency’s end-to-end digital marketing services for clients.

“It’s an honor to take the reins from such a well-respected leader as Ian, and the time is right to make this change. The CMOs we talk to are already beginning to rethink their media buys, and take a digital-first approach to marketing spend,” Gahler said. “It’s a smart way to look at marketing. Marketing dollars are further aligning with the consumer ‘path to purchase’ model given the majority of their purchasing decisions are now made online.”

Portent has always been at the forefront of a holistic marketing strategy, and Google’s changes to search further reinforce the agency’s core principles. The boutique digital agency has already begun to offer these expanded services including creative design and a portfolio of proprietary marketing analytics to its clients with noticeable results. The strategic investment in Actual Labs reinforces Portent’s commitment to provide remarkable digital marketing solutions to clients. By providing a holistic and integrated approach to digital marketing, which includes tools and services, Portent has helped hundreds of companies see stronger organic online engagement with their consumers, as well as more responsive communication - all while reporting valuable returns on marketing spend.

“We closed 2013 on an incredible high note, with annual revenues up by 46% percent and impressive performance records for our clients,” said Gahler. “But that wouldn’t be possible without our world-class team who’ve earned the trust of many major brands. Our latest investment in Actual Labs will not only further our growth trajectory in 2014, but it will clearly demonstrate how Seattle can increase marketing value in ways that old Madison Avenue can only dream about.”

For more information about Portent, and their Internet marketing services, visit: http://www.portent.com.

About Portent, Inc.
Portent, Inc. is a Seattle-based digital marketing agency that helps brands build meaningful relationships with consumers online. By bridging together data, design and discoverability practices, Portent offers brands an end-to-end marketing strategy that provides C-Suite executives, marketers, and their agencies a 360-degree view of their campaign spend. Ian Lurie, one of the world’s top experts on Internet, search and social media marketing, founded Portent in 1995.


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Tina Qunell
Rubii Media
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