Social and influencer-marketing agency The Fifth, part of Murdoch’s News Corp, is shutting down its UK talent division

  • Social-creative agency The Fifth is shutting down its UK talent division.
  • The company, owned by Murdoch’s News Corp, said it would focus on other parts of the business.
  • Layoffs and restructurings continue to affect many creator-economy companies.

The Fifth, a social-creative agency based in the United Kingdom, has confirmed to Business Insider that it is closing its talent-management arm in the country.

The company is owned by News UK, a media conglomerate that owns The Times, The Sunday Times, and The Sun. Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp owns News UK.

Oliver Lewis, formerly News UK’s director of digital strategy and partnerships, founded The Fifth in 2019, and The Fifth’s talent division debuted a year later.

The talent division, according to its website, has a roster of about 30 creators across a variety of niches, including many micro and mid-tier influencers (with less than 500,000 followers across social-media platforms).

The company stated that it had decided to focus its efforts on the social-creative and influencer-marketing side of the business due to changes in the UK market. It has collaborated with companies such as Eurostar, BareMinerals, and Tag Heuer, among others.

As part of the transition, The Fifth has acquired News UK’s production agency Studio PI.

“In the past 12 months within the creator talent management space, we have seen the market shift in the UK, with increased investment from more traditional talent agencies with larger infrastructures and a broader service now focused in the creator space,” the company said in a press release.

“This is a positive for the entire industry and a sign of growth, and whilst we are proud of our role to this point, we have made the decision that others are better placed to service our talent’s ambitions at the level required in this booming industry,” the company said in a statement.

According to a company spokesperson, the change would affect fewer than ten people, and some members of the talent team would remain with the company and join the client services team in the UK.

According to the spokesperson, The Fifth is expanding its US operations in response to client and market demand.

Over the last year, layoffs and restructurings have become commonplace in the creator economy as companies respond to a shifting market, with changes affecting dozens of companies ranging from social-media platforms like Meta and TikTok to startups like Linktree and Karat.

“What VCs are basically asking these firms to do, especially startups, is to be more productive and make sure that they’re in a position to become profitable sooner rather than later,” Dan Wang, an associate professor at Columbia Business School, previously told BI. “Rather than deliver the promise of growth, they have to basically concentrate on the fundamentals of business, and doing so often means cutting costs.”

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