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National acquires Shift Communications

National Public Relations of Montreal has acquired Shift Communications, a communications agency based in Boston. The firm also has offices in New York, Austin and San Francisco, with a total staff of approximately 150. According to National, the purchase is part of a long-term effort to diversify its international client base and capabilities, particularly in the United States. Shift, founded in 2003 by principals Todd Defren and Jim Joyal, offers public relations services with a focus on data and social media activities. The agency will continue to operate with its current name and senior staff.

"We are delighted to join the National family," said Defren. "This is a deal that began, and crossed the finish line, because from our first meeting, we recognized an immediate alignment on values, culture and vision. We're very much looking forward to helping National expand its North American footprint, and believe we have found the right partner to help us achieve our own ambitions for delivering a new style of data-driven PR."

Shift's client list includes Citrix, Demandbase, the Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau, McDonald's, Orchard Supply Hardware, Red Hat, the RSA Conference, Webroot and Whole Foods Market.

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