NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--ICR today announced that it has made major investments to further expand its presence on the West Coast, building upon its strong foundation and momentum in the market place. The firm has added Kevin Faulkner as Managing Director, to lead West Coast Tech IR, and Merrill Freund, Managing Director, to lead West Coast Tech PR efforts. Both professionals bring over 20 years of senior level experience in their respective fields, as well as a proven track record in helping companies optimize brand and equity value. The teams being led by Kevin and Merrill serve as part of ICR’s dedicated technology group, which is comprised of over 30 professionals and specialists with expertise spanning the spectrum of tech-driven industries.
“We are thrilled to have hired two very talented and experienced leaders to help ICR take its West Coast presence to the next level. This is an incredibly strategic geographic area for the firm, and our increased investments reflect a commitment to extending our market leadership position,” said Tom Ryan, CEO of ICR. “Our firm is highly differentiated in its ability to deliver integrated communications and transaction advisory services to technology clients at every stage of the lifecycle, and we believe the addition of Kevin and Merrill to the ICR team is great news for clients in this market.”
Kevin Faulkner was most recently Vice President of Investor Relations at Apigee, following the company’s IPO and leading up to its acquisition by Google. He was previously a Senior Vice President of Investor Relations with BEA Systems. During his 10 years with BEA, the company’s revenue scaled from over $150 million to more than $1.5 billion at the time it was acquired by Oracle for $8.5 billion. Faulkner also served as a spokesperson for investor, customer, partner, industry analyst, press and employee communications, and served as member of the company’s senior management team. Additionally, he spent 6 years as Vice President of Investor Relations at Nuance Communications, during which time the company’s revenue increased from over $250 million to over $2 billion. Faulkner spent the first decade of his career as a Corporate and Securities Attorney with several firms, including Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati and Morrison & Foerster, where he worked on a range of IPOs, M&A transactions, and general corporate matters for technology companies.
Merrill Freund most recently ran his own tech PR agency, from which he brought his team, including Anna Vaverka, and roster of clients to ICR. Freund spent 20 years with Schwartz Communications (acquired by MSL Group), where he led the San Francisco office and served as Executive Vice President and Managing Director for one of the largest tech PR agencies on the West Coast. At Schwartz, Freund led a 60-person team servicing emerging growth technology companies in industries including cloud computing, big data analytics, enterprise software, mobile, and data center infrastructure. During his career, Freund has represented start-ups as well as Fortune 500 companies, in each case helping them define and differentiate company stories in addition to dramatically increasing awareness and brand value.
“ICR continues lead the market in software and security related IPOs with recent advisory engagements including MuleSoft, Alteryx, Yext and Appian,” said Tim Dolan, Head of ICR’s Technology Group. “We are excited to have Kevin and Merrill join our team to help West Coast technology companies optimize their messaging and scale their communications programs based on their substantial experience.”
ICR’s services platform includes IPO advisory, investor relations, public relations, creative services/digital branding, IPO roadshow videos, and crisis/special situations management. ICR has advised more companies through the IPO process than any peer and has built one of the largest communications platforms in the world servicing more than 20 industries, with technology being the largest. O’Dwyer’s, a leading PR and communications industry publication, ranks ICR as a Top 10 provider of Technology and Industrials communications services.
Established in 1998, ICR partners with companies to optimize transactions and execute strategic communications programs that achieve business goals, build credibility and enhance long-term enterprise value. The firm’s highly differentiated service model, which pairs capital markets veterans with senior communications professionals, brings deep sector knowledge and relationships to more than 500 clients in approximately 20 industries. Today, ICR is one of the largest and most experienced independent communications and advisory firms in North America maintaining offices in New York, Norwalk, Los Angeles, Boston, San Francisco, Hong Kong and Beijing.