Brand Transformation Agency SCS Merges With Atlanta-Based Digital Performance Marketing Boutique Swarm

Move combines strengths in performance marketing, creative and analytics

IRVINE, Calif., August 10, 2021–(BUSINESS WIRE)–SCS, known for using data science and creativity with speed, value, and innovation to help businesses reach brand goals, announced today that it has merged with independent digital performance marketing agency Swarm.

This press release features multimedia. View the full release here:

James Schiefer, Chief Executive Officer, SCS (Photo: Business Wire)

Founded in 2009 by Tom and Alexa Ellis, Swarm is a full-service digital performance marketing agency delivering strategy, marketing, design, and technology services. The agency was recognized by Atlanta Business Chronicle as one of Atlanta’s “25 Largest Marketing Firms” and as one of Atlanta’s “20 Best Small Businesses” to work for.

SCS was founded as Schiefer Media by Carl Schiefer in Orange County, California in 1985. Schiefer Media merged with creative agency ChopShop in 2016 to form SCS, and acquired digital production agency Fuel in 2018.

A strategically grounded, results-driven agency, Swarm builds brands by creating seamless user experiences through the entire digital decision journey. Like SCS, it sets itself apart by championing its people and sustaining a supportive, accountable culture that gives everyone the ability to set goals and grow.

Together under the SCS brand name, the new entity includes 100 people across three offices – Atlanta, Southern California, and Ottawa (Canada) – offering an integrated digital, media, creative and marketing consultancy designed as a modern, agile-solution at scale for national and international brand management.

Tom Ellis, former CEO of Swarm, now serves as Chief Revenue Officer (CRO) of SCS and Alexa Ellis, former SVP Marketing and Implementation, becomes Chief Operating Officer (COO). The two will continue to grow the Southeast region as part of the larger entity, with team members across Creative, Strategy, Digital, Analytics, Media and Brand Solutions disciplines integrating immediately to offer further capabilities for all SCS and Swarm clients. James Schiefer continues as Founder & CEO of SCS and Jeff Roach, who joined with the ChopShop acquisition and was previously at Fuel, continues as President & Chief Strategy Officer.

Schiefer commented, “Marketing today, and especially with the rise of e-commerce, requires a deep level of creativity, data and technology. We were attracted to Swarm because of its founders’ commitment to employees and clients as well as its strength in digital, media and DTC focus, designing compelling campaigns and communications across a variety of brands and to a variety of consumers. We see enormous growth opportunities with Swarm and we are delighted with the complementary fit of the Swarm team.”

Ellis echoed that sentiment, noting, “Swarm’s strength in digital strategy, media, search marketing, user experience and technology is being greatly enhanced with the expansion of best-in-class creative, analytics and strategy. Our cultures and teams are closely aligned, allowing us to hit the ground running as a larger team. We are thrilled to continue fostering and building the relationships in the Southeast that have made Swarm who we are, and to growing those relationships with additional value as SCS.”

Current SCS clients include, among others, Brembo, DECKED, Discovery Networks, John Deere, Falken, Miele, Mothers, Nexstar, OSDB, Spectrum Brands (Kwikset, Pfister, Baldwin, National Hardware, Omega One, Marineland), SYLVANIA, Vans, Warner Bros., and West Coast University.

Today’s announcement follows the appointment of Glenn Rogers as Chief Development Officer, with responsibility for charting growth for the agency through new strategic partnerships. Rogers worked closely with Amanda Dixon of Barney in Newport Beach, the M&A broker in this deal. Financial details are undisclosed.


SCS is a brand transformation agency that uses data science and creativity to help brands perform. With a 100-person team across offices in Southern California, Atlanta, and Ottawa, Canada, this full-service integrated agency optimizes brand performance in the Lifestyle, CPG, DTC, Automotive, Technology, Home Improvement, and Youth & Family categories. Founded in 2016 through a merger of Schiefer Media, ChopShop Entertainment, and Fuel, SCS is an independent agency with Strategy, Media, Creative, Digital, UX, and Social Media practices. It recently merged with digital performance marketing agency Swarm which uses data, user experience, and technology to drive lead generation and e-commerce performance. Founded in 2009, Swarm is known for its digital strategy work in the Financial, Home Services, Retail, B2B, Consumer Products, E-Commerce and Attraction/Tourism Industries.

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Pat Sloan
[email protected]

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