What happens when a 12-year-old influencer management company shuts its doors?



Sadly, Gleam Futures has abruptly shut down its US office. The agency represented some of the top YouTubers on earth, including Zoella, the Pixiwoo sisters, Marcus Butler, and Caspar Lee. In 2017 the advertising agency Dentsu Aegis acquired a majority stake in the company. While their UK office was considered their headquarters the US office was a significant part of their overall business.

On August 1, all US talent managers and assistants were blindsided and told “today will be your last day”.

Gleam joins the ranks of companies who are downsizing, but this one feels different. Gleam is one of the OGs of influencer management. According to their website they represented “160 influencers company-wide”.

So what causes a 12-year-old influencer management to disappear? Time will tell.

All US-based talent are being released from their contracts, according to an employee who was affected by the layoffs.

Why not downsize? Why not sell?

According to the employee we spoke with, this was a complete shock. She wasn’t given time to wind down the business or share the news with her clients.

There was mention of severance but it’s unclear if everyone would get it or how much it would be. These had been recent hires. Would they be eligible? While COBRA is an option for everyone in the US, it can start around $600 per month. Marketplace insurance isn’t much cheaper, especially if you want something comparable with what you’re used to.

Two weeks ago Gleam proudly announced that they were nominated for Talent Management Agency of the Year at the Blogosphere Awards 2022. As of August 8 they had an Account Executive job listing advertised on their website. No location was listed.

If you were affected by these layoffs, please make sure to check out our influencer marketing job fair on August 17, 2022. If you’re hiring please let us help spread the word at our event. You can get involved here.


Founder of Women in Influencer Marketing and CEO of Tribe Monday

Jessy Grossman is a long time entrepreneur in the digital media space. She’s passionate about supporting women in business and being at the forefront of innovation. She’s been quoted in Forbes and was awarded a spot in the “Influencer Top 50” by Talking Influence. In less than two years she created one of the fastest growing talent agencies in the country. Amidst unprecedented growth, she sold the multi-six-figure agency and pivoted to focus on her long-time passion project: Women in Influencer Marketing (better known as WIIM). Founded in 2017, today WIIM is the premiere professional organization for those who work with influencers. The community offers networking and new business opportunities, career services, continuous education and more. Jessy also does consulting, advising and influencer marketing recruiting with her company Tribe Monday. You can find inspiring stories and more about Jessy on the WIIM Podcast. Check out iamwiim.com and tribemonday.com for more information.

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