Partners + Napier Expands Via Acquisition Of Roberts Communications

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Courtney Cotrupe Named President to Run Fortified Offering

Courtney Cotrupe (center) is now president of Partners + Napier after acquisition of Roberts Communications. Partners CEO Sharon Napier (l.) led negotiations with Roberts CEO Bill Murtha.

We’re very excited about this next chapter. We have a great team and this acquisition further fuels our growth and momentum. With additional talent and capabilities, we can provide even more value to clients. The market doesn’t stop evolving – and neither will we.

As part of its long-term strategic growth plan – and in keeping with its determination to challenge the status quo – Rochester-based Partners + Napier is acquiring select clients, talent, and capabilities of Roberts Communications effective Nov. 1.

“This deal grew out of a long-standing relationship between two agencies that are both committed to doing great work for clients that delivers results. It was a natural next step in our growth and will add to our already stellar credentials in the health and wellness, food and beverage, and financial services categories,” said Partners + Napier founder and CEO Sharon Napier, who will continue in that role.

The acquisition also enhances and expands upon Partners + Napier’s existing relationships with Excellus BlueCross BlueShield, Univera Healthcare, and Xerox, while adding two new clients to its roster: ITT and Jewish Senior Life.

A significant number of Roberts employees will move to Partners + Napier, part of the independent Project Worldwide network, ensuring a seamless transition for these five clients. They will also help expand agency credentials in the digital experience, analytics, social media and public relations arenas.

In recognition of her expanded role following this acquisition, Courtney Cotrupe – who has been managing director of Partners + Napier – is being promoted to president of the agency. She and Executive Creative Director Pete VonDerLinn will continue to report to Napier. Senior Roberts’ leader Katrina Busch is joining Partners + Napier as SVP/group account director, reporting to Cotrupe.

Bill Murtha, Roberts CEO, will serve as transition consultant for Partners + Napier to ensure the successful integration of Roberts clients and people into the combined organization. Murtha plans to retire in 2018 from the advertising business to pursue personal interests including writing, consulting and teaching. Other key Roberts executives, including Stu Norris, EVP and chief operating officer, and Bruce Kielar, EVP and chief creative officer, and other staff, will fulfill commitments to clients not transitioning.

The negotiations were led by Napier and Murtha, both of whom had worked together more than 20 years ago as senior leaders at Eric Mower & Associates and have been friends since.

“Roberts had reached a point where being part of a bigger agency with a deep commitment to creating effective work, expanded resources, and more opportunities made sense,” said Murtha. “We’re enormously proud of all that Roberts has accomplished over the years, and remain committed to making sure there is an absolutely seamless transition for our clients and our people.”

Roberts employees who are joining Partners + Napier will ultimately move into Partners + Napier’s building in the High Falls area of Rochester.

“We’re very excited about this next chapter. We have a great team and this acquisition further fuels our growth and momentum,” said Cotrupe. “With additional talent and capabilities, we can provide even more value to clients. The market doesn’t stop evolving – and neither will we.”

About Partners + Napier
Partners + Napier is an integrated advertising agency based in Rochester, NY, now with nearly 150 people. It’s an agency for people and brands with something to prove. For 13 years, Partners has resisted the status quo, providing incredible return on marketing investment for clients like Bausch + Lomb, BMW and MINI Financial Services, Constellation Brands, Delta Vacations, Excellus BlueCross BlueShield, Gannett, and Highmark Health. As the first creative agency to join Project Worldwide, Partners + Napier collaborates closely with like-minded agencies around the world to deliver scale, resources, and ROI for brands like Pepsi, Mountain Dew, Tribe Hummus, and Jeep. Partners + Napier has service offices in New York City and San Francisco. To learn more, visit

About Project Worldwide
Project is an independent, global network in service of creativity. With 2,200+ people in 46 offices, Project’s agencies make things that inspire people to participate and act on behalf of our clients’ brands. Our portfolio of agencies includes Argonaut, Dig+Fish, George P. Johnson, G7 Entertainment Marketing, JUXT, Motive, Partners + Napier, Pitch, Praytell, Raumtechnik, School, Shoptology, Spinifex Group, and Wondersauce. Visit for more information.

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Wally Petersen
WRP Communications
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Becca Bellush
Partners + Napier
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