We’re delighted to announce that after nearly one year of discussion and due diligence, 10up has completed an acquisition of Lift UX: a boutique, distributed, Emmy-nominated agency that specializes in making user experience design driven websites powered by WordPress. The Lift team, including its founding partners, Chris Wallace and Brad Miller, join 10up effective immediately.
Founded as a boutique digital creative shop in 2009, Lift has delivered web projects for clients like Frito-Lay, The Next Web, eBay, GoDaddy, and Disney. Lift earned acclaim when a “second screen” experience built for AMC’s Walking Dead was nominated for an Emmy Award in the interactive program category in 2012. Their work earn a second nomination in 2015 for Mad Men: The Fan Cut. Among their innovations, Lift built and sold a WordPress themes shop (UpThemes), and started a career center for distributed companies, RemoteJobs.com. They recently launched CampusInsiders.com, a project spotlighted by Automattic’s WordPress.com VIP program; the project earned Lift an invitation to become an official VIP agency partner.
As 10up’s President & Founder, I am elated to welcome this outstanding team, award recognized portfolio, and client roster to the 10up family. This acquisition accelerates our growth in Experience Design, adding executive-tier design leadership and enriching our growing portfolio of design stories. It represents a special opportunity for all parties to go further and faster as we partner with clients to make a better web.
Chris Wallace, Partner & Creative Director at Lift, will become 10up’s Vice President of Experience Design. His finely crafted design work, hands on front end build experience, and engagement with design and developer communities uniquely positions him to be 10up’s first exclusively design focused executive. He will report to Chief Executive Officer John Eckman.
Brad Miller, Partner & Executive Director at Lift, will assume the title Vice President & Associate Director of Client Strategy. Brad will be applying his winning track record building accounts and relationships, as he joins our Client Strategy team. He will report to Vice President of Client Strategy Grant Landram, partnering with accounts leadership to advance design opportunities. A fellow business owner and entrepreneur, I’m looking forward to the fresh perspective Brad will add to 10up’s executive leadership.
Also joining 10up: Christian Chung, Lift’s Director of Technology, and Anthony Garand, Front End Developer at Lift. They will come aboard in Senior Web and Front End Engineering positions, respectively, providing continuity for incoming clients and further bolstering our talented engineering team. In reviewing their work as part of due diligence, our Director of Engineering called their work, “impressive” – and I agree.
Lift’s leadership adds to 10up’s existing Experience Design team: two Visual Designers, four User Experience Designers – including User Experience Director Taylor Dewey, and two Audience & Revenue Strategists, to say nothing of our many UX and design oriented Front End Engineers, Client Strategists, and Project Managers. 10up is committed to offering its clients best-in-class expertise and execution across the full spectrum of content-centric digital experiences.
We also remain firmly committed to our engineering and strategic services, and to our many clients and partners who look for 10up to complement their own design competencies or offerings. Adding more experience design expertise to our company DNA enhances our empathy and ability to collaborate with design partners in an era of interactive, responsive design where divisions between “design” and “engineering” have eroded. (And it doesn’t hurt to know that we can pinch hit!)
It takes a special kind of chemistry and alignment for a deal like this to work. We often explore opportunities to join forces, and pass on most. In our conversations with Lift, it became apparent that their client, team, and community centricity, expertise with our preferred platforms, and palpable passion for digital creation were almost eery in their alignment with 10up. We share the same core values: service, craftsmanship, creativity, and innovation. Brad and Chris are thoughtful, ambitious, honest, and humble leaders. If working closely on this deal for months is any indication, they will be a pleasure to work with.
I can’t wait to see what we make together.