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Posts Tagged ‘Maurice Levy’

Wednesday Morning Stir

-The Cannes Lions crew will be honoring Lee Clow with the Lion of St. Mark award at this year’s festivities.

-The Grand Effie jury has been announced for the 45th annual North American Effie Awards. link

-Boston-based Businesses for Innovative Climate and Energy Policy, or BICEP, has named hometown marketing/filmmaking company Captains of Industry as their first agency of record. In turn, the latter has crafted a “Climate Declaration,” which has been signed by 33 major companies including Adidas, Intel, Nike and Starbucks.

-TBWA\Hunt\Lascaris plays the ultimate game of fetch in a spot for Jungle Energy Bars (above).

-New York-based agency sparks & honey has appointed Publicis Kaplan Thaler alum Sarah Davanzo as chief cultural strategy officer.

-Maurice Levy shares plenty of thoughts with Campaign during Publicis Groupe’s Investor Day on items including a possible merger with IPG and eventually stepping down from his post. link

Catch NY Nabs And1 Biz

According to those in the know, it is indeed true that NYC-based agency Catch, which last we recall was named agency of record for Loews Hotels last fall, has now picked up AOR duties for And1, the basketball apparel brand that has brought awareness to some of the best street hoops players ever. If you’re not aware, check out the compilation clip above featuring the likes of legendary street ballers-turned-NBA players such as Rafer “Skip to My Lou” Alston.

Anyhow, we’ve been told that And1 brand manager Maurice Levy (different guy, of course) and Catch New York managing partner Joe Perello and partner/CCO Doug Spitzer were the ones who sealed the deal on the account, which calls for the agency to handle its new client’s branding, marketing and media strategy, advertising, creative, digital, mobile, media planning and buying as well as the development of a long-term marketing growth plan.

Sources familiar with the matter add that Catch is replacing Portland, OR-based Frank Creative on the And1 business.

Publicis Groupe Buys Up Rokkan

Well, this is a pretty notable item as we wind down for the holidays. Twelve-year-old, New York-based digital agency Rokkan, which works with clients ranging from Stoli to Sharp to Caesars to JetBlue (and was NOT for sale as of last summer) has been acquired by Publicis Groupe. Despite the 100 percent purchase, Rokkan (Japanese for “sixth sense”) will operate autonomously within the Publicis Groupe network and its co-founders, CEO John Noe, chief experience officer Chung Ng, and CCO Charles Bae, will continue to lead the agency.

In a joint statement, the co-founders say, “This is a major stepping stone that will take Rokkan to the next level and beyond. We’ve seen a number of potential buyers over the years, but it wasn’t until we met with the folks at Publicis Groupe that we found a partnership we truly believed in. Joining Publicis Groupe gives Rokkan access to resources, capabilities and knowledge to better scale, grow and service our multinational clients. Furthermore, it will help support Rokkan’s aggressive plans for domestic and global growth. We’re thrilled to be joining a company that believes in our culture, people and vision.”

No word on financials yet, but the Rokkan acquisition marks just one of a handful made by YouTube manipulator/Publicis Groupe chief Maurice Levy & Co. within the last month alone including the purchase of luxury/fashion-focused agency AR New York and a couple of shops in India. We’ve been told that staff count at Rokkan will not be affected by this move.

Publicis Groupe’s Maurice Lévy Hacks YouTube’s Functionality in This Year’s Holiday Greeting

Snow flurries are starting. Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer is on network TV. Eggnog is once again a thing. And Publicis Groupe’s CEO Maurice Lévy is back with another holiday greeting. Christmas is coming, you guys!

Now, the press release we got about this is a little, well, apologetic. “His speech has been a little on the long side in the past,” it admits. “So, this year he made a superhuman effort to keep it short and to allow viewers to enjoy this video on their own terms.” What the hell does the mean? Well, I don’t want to spoil too much of the surprise, but if you watch it on YouTube, your natural tendencies to skip forward, pause, or play with the volume of the video will be greatly rewarded with disapproval from Lévy. He knows what you did. You may not listen to the man in charge’s talk, but you can play with the way it’s delivered.

Unfortunately, Digitas France has not provided an embeddable version of  the greeting, no doubt because YouTube magic can only go so far (unlike Christmas magic). However, you can still link to it from the above video. Credits after the jump.

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VivaKi to Spin Off into Separate Business Unit

Don’t worry, Publicis Groupe’s four-year-old VivaKi division, which includes Digitas, Razorfish, Starcom MediaVest Group ZenithOptimedia and most recently LBi, will remain within the fold but not so attached at the hip. The world’s third-largest agency holding company has announced that VivaKi will become a separate business unit, still reporting to Publicis Groupe boss Maurice Levy, but one that will now be opened to all PG agencies, in turn extending the offerings of the Nerve Center, including AOD and the Pool, to clients of Publicis Groupe and ultimately to clients outside of the Groupe.

Says Levy in a statement, “The Nerve Center has been one of the most successful accomplishments of VivaKi. Still the only operation of its kind in our industry, it brings strategic innovations to life by leveraging the collective influence of its agencies. It allows us to create world class offerings in the Center rather than building duplicate capabilities inside each agency.  Efficient innovation is its hallmark.  All CEOs and leaders will immediately engage VivaKi to leverage its products and services, and to create blueprints for new tools and technologies that will make us stronger, more efficient and more imaginative partners to our clients.”

As far as leadership goes, VivaKi CEO Jack Klues is phasing out of his position at the agency after 35 years as he plans to retire at the end of this year (can’t blame him), though he will stay on through the first half of 2013 to ease the transition. The new VivaKi unit’s executive will consist of SMG CEO Laura Desmond, Razorfish CEO Bob Lord, current VivaKi CFO Frank Voris and ZenithOptimedia’s chief exec, Steve King.

Publicis Groupe Buys Up LBi

The tips have come in fast and furious over the last couple of hours including this: “Publicis Groupe S.A. and LBi International N.V. Agreement on Intended Recommended Public Cash Offer.” Well, now according to Reuters, it is indeed true as the holding company has agreed to acquire Dutch ad agency LBI International NV in a deal valued at nearly $540 million. While not quite the $600 million figure some predicted a few months ago, Publicis Groupe’s latest purchase does near the price that WPP paid for AKQA.

In a statement, Publicis Groupe chairman/CEO Maurice Levy says, “The acquisition of LBi is another step forward in further strengthening our digital operations. Within the global advertising landscape, LBi is a well known partner for extraordinary digital customer experiences, based on a blend of creativity and expertise in technology, strategy and social media. The integration of LBi will further enhance our capabilities and, through a wider pool of resources and talent, help deliver innovative and best-in-class services to our clients, which is our relentless focus. Furthermore, this acquisition has a positive impact on our EPS in the first year post acquisition.”

According to the official announce, LBi’s management/supervisory board was basically in full support of the acquisition, saying the “transaction is in the best interests of the company and its stakeholders including its clients, shareholders, partners and employees.”

Thursday Morning Stir

-Google has its eyes set on Siri as it launches a voice search app on iOS. link

-Fold7 designed a new site for British clothing label, Sunspel. link

-Lil Buck helps ring in Gap’s denim fall collection (above).

-Publicis Group’s VivaKi unit has teamed up with comScore to launch an viewability metric. link

-Speaking of Publicis, the holding company’s boss Maurice Levy has reportedly rekindled his feud with Sir Martin Sorrell over the IPG rumors. link

-Ryan Lochte: Now an advocate for kids peeing in the pool. link

 

Publicis Groupe Takes Full Ownership of BBH

Tis a busy post-July 4th for Publicis Groupe as Maurice Levy and his France-based holding company have now acquired the remaining 51 percent stake from BBH founders Nigel Bogle and Sir John Hegarty as well as 100 percent of the shares of Brazilian agency Neogama/BBH.

Publicis Groupe originally acquired a 49 percent stake in BBH 10 years ago when it bought up Bcom3. Regarding the full sale of his 30-year-old agency, which just racked up 21 Cannes Lions this year, BBH’s Bogle says in a statement, “The decision was very clear. We were looking for an opportunity that would ensure that our agency maintained a high degree of autonomy and could continue to abide by the values characterized by the black sheep. The key point for us was the preservation of our operational independence in managing the BBH brand, which has produced almost uninterrupted growth for thirty years. The new ownership not only ensures our autonomy, but brings us considerable advantages through Publicis Groupe’s resources and global infrastructure.”

As a result of the transaction, Hegarty will now pass the baton to Neogama founder Alexandre Gama, who will take over as worldwide CCO. In addition, 30-year BBH vet Simon Sherwood will now assume the role of group chairman, Gwyn Jones, who joined the agency in 1987, becomes group CEO while Zag chief exec Neil Munn will take on the dual role of group chief operating officer. As for Hegarty and Bogle, the founding pair will serve on the Publicis Groupe management board (along with Levy, Sherwood, Jean-Yves Naouri, Jean-Michel Etienne and ZenithOptimedia global CEO Steve King), focusing on client business and mentoring of management. Gwyn Jones, meanwhile, will oversee day-to-day operations for BBH’s global management team.

Digitas/Razorfish Health Now Housed Under PHCG Umbrella

We’re not sure if this is an evolution of the “shared centers of excellence” structure that Digitas/Razorfish Health were plotting after the last round of layoffs this summer, but whatever the case, the agencies have now aligned with Publicis Healthcare Communications Group as part of a revamp of Publicis Groupe’s healthcare offering.

With this move, Digitas and Razorfish Health will join a PHCG roster that currently includes Saatchi & Saatchi Health, Publicis Life Brands, Publicis Healthware International, Publicis Touchpoint Solutions, and Publicis Medical Education Group. Leadership-wise, while Digitas/Razorfish Health CEO is calling it quits by year’s end, global co-presidents Michael du Toit and Alexandra von Plato will remain on board and report to PHCG president/CEO Nick Colucci. In a statement, Publicis Groupe COO Jean-Yves Naouri, who’s been mentioned over and over as Maurice Levy‘s eventual successor and oversees PHCG, says, “This move will create patterns of cross-fertilization, ensuring that we have the sharpest and best integrated skills on the market.”

The Philly-based Health units’ client roster currently includes J&J, Prizer and Bristol-Myers Squibb.

Monday Morning Stir (Totally NSFW Edition)

-Publicis chief Maurice Levy is training more than one successor. link

-As expected, RIM makes some major cuts. link

-Bi-coastal shop IdeaWork Studio takes at a stab at redesigning the web presence of Tropicana (not the one you’re thinking of). link

-Spotify racked up 70,000 U.S. subscribers in its first week. link

-Skittles (nor its agencies) had nothing to do with what has to be our favorite unauthorized ad for the brand (above-NSFW). link

 

 

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