We Hear: Multicultural Healthcare Agency Prime Access Closes, Lays Off All Staff

By Patrick Coffee 

In some unfortunate agency news that flew under our radar, a New York-based multicultural healthcare shop called Prime Access appears to have gone out of business earlier this month.

We’ve been unable to reach anyone from the agency or its parent company 9.8 Group today, but the listed phone number for Prime Access in Manhattan is no longer working. Its website and Facebook pages have also gone dead, and the group last tweeted more than a month ago.

It’s true that Prime Access did not receive a whole lot of press attention, but it was unique in being an independent, minority-owned and healthcare-focused creative agency.

In 2012, the company was acquired by a group called Global Advertising Strategies, itself now part of a holding company called 9.8 Group that is based in Manhattan. At the time, the merger was called “the largest independently-owned healthcare marketing agency that focuses on reaching African-American, Hispanic, Asian-American, LGBT, and other diverse U.S. populations.” The release also described Prime Access as “a 20-year-old, full-service marketing and advertising agency that creates customized marketing programs targeted to the multicultural consumers and social networks of the New American Marketplace.”

The last news from Prime Access came in July, when the company announced a healthcare leadership panel series. The release quoted CEO Chip Weinstein, who left the group in August according to his LinkedIn page.

A tipster tells us that Prime Access officially went out of business last week due to a pending bankruptcy, closed its office and let all of its employees go. According to its still-live LinkedIn profile, at some point in the recent past it employed 50-200 people.

We reached out to Global Advertising Strategies/9.8 Group, which no longer lists Prime Access among a portfolio of companies on its website, but have yet to receive a response.