Two local billboard companies have come together to cover more ground in the Augusta area.
Azalea Outdoor Advertising, an Augusta-based billboard company and a subsidiary of Azalea Investments, LLC, announced on Dec. 30 its acquisition of fellow outdoor ad company BeStill Displays.
The transaction, brokered by consulting firm Williamson & Associates on behalf of BeStill, entails the divestment of all BeStill’s static and digital assets throughout Augusta, Aiken and the surrounding areas. This includes 22 digital, 20 static and 23 mini-LED outdoor surfaces for advertising copy, known in the industry as “faces.”
Derek May, president of Azalea Investment, says that though the deal is technically an acquisition, or a purchase of a controlling majority of one company’s assets by another company, it represents more of a merger into one larger company.
Chris Withers, president and owner of BeStill, will remain with the business as president of the expanded Azalea Outdoor.
“When you’re in the business, the goal is to grow,” said May. “We learned that Chris was interested in selling. With ours being in and around the Augusta area, and Chris’ being around the Augusta area, our footprint overlays each other.”
Azalea Outdoor, which is owned by the Morris family who also own Morris Communications, has obtained over 160 static and digital faces throughout Georgia and South Carolina since it launched in 2019 via three other acquisitions, according to its website.
BeStill, since it opened in 2009, has built over 22 billboard locations and several mini-LED faces at YMCA centers throughout the area.
“In the past, we would oftentimes say, ‘We can’t help you over here,’” said May regarding occasions when a client’s request was outside of Azalea Outdoors’ territory, which he says occurred frequently. “Let’s connect them with Chris; or Chris would do the same thing with us.”
Mays says that the firms’ joining of forces means that a potential client could hit virtually all parts of Augusta, Aiken and the surrounding areas with one ad campaign, whereas before covering such a wide reach would have required consulting multiple sources.
Ultimately, May says, the deal is about covering new ground in a partnership largely based on an amicable, already-existing business relationship.
“We’re just happy,” he said. “Chris and I have known each other for years, and we’re looking forward to working together: two local companies getting together to make one.”