A wave of consolidation is sweeping across global media agencies.
France-based media communications conglomerate Publicis Groupe
has taken full control of Britsh creative agency Bartle, Bogle
Hegarty (BBH), acquiring its remaining 51 per cent stake for
an undisclosed amount.
a separate deal, Publicis has also gobbled up Brazilian idea
shop NEOGAMA/BBH, buying out the founder and chief creative
officer Alexandre Gama's 64 per cent stake. The balance 34
per cent was held by BBH.
which ended 2011 with a revenue of 42.2 million euros, will
retain its name and continue to be led by Gama. Triacom and
Made in Moon, the two affiliate agencies that provide digital
and retail consulting services respectively, have also become
part of Publicis Groupe through this deal.
the acquisition, Gama will succeed BBH founding partner Sir
John Hegarty as worldwide chief creative officer (WCCO) and
group chief executive officer Simon Sherwood will take over
as group chairman. Gwyn Jones will be group chief executive
officer and Neil Munn, who is currently Zag (BBH's brand ventures
company) CEO, has been given additional responsibility as
group chief operating officer. The founding partner duo of
Bogle and Hegarty will continue their roles in the creative
sphere, but will not be actively involved in the executive
functions at the agency. Bogle will also be involved in coaching
and mentoring the new management team.
Board of the BBH holding company will consist of three members
of the Publicis Groupe Management Board - Maurice Lévy,
Jean-Yves Naouri, and Jean-Michel Etienne along with ZenithOptimedia
global CEO Steve King, Bogle, Hegarty and Sherwood. This board
will delegate full responsibility and authority for the day-to-day
management and operation to a BBH Global Management Team led
by Gwyn Jones.
Groupe chairman and CEO Maurice Lévy said, "These
transactions will enable the unification of the BBH network.
Publicis Groupe has been a good partner to BBH and NEOGAMA/BBH
over the past ten years; we've managed to understand the rare
and special company ethos of BBH, its symbol (the black sheep)
and its community of men and women, who are recognized as
some of the best professionals in our industry. Faithful to
our motto, 'Viva la Difference,' we have decided, together
with Nigel, John and Alexandre, to engineer an integration
that will preserve and protect their specific culture, their
working methods, and the characteristics of the agencies through
an approach of 'autonomy inside' the Groupe. BBH's management
will continue to be independent and the network will develop
in its own way, in its own style, while benefiting from the
support of Publicis Groupe's resources to accelerate its growth
both geographically and via the expansion of its capabilities
into more diverse areas."
founded in London in 1982 by John Bartle, Nigel Bogle and
Sir John Hegarty, had reported revenues of 112.2 million euros
(excluding Brazil) in 2011. The agency employs close to 1000
people worldwide and has to its credit many iconic campaigns
like Audi's "Vorsprung durch Technik", Johnny Walker's
"Keep Walking", British Airways' "To Fly. To
Serve", Axe Deodorant's "The Axe Effect" and
the most recent "The Web is what you make of it"
said, "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 characterised 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."
added, "Creativity is at the very heart of BBH. The quality
of our work and the people who produce it have always been
central to our success and will continue to be so into the
in Sao Paulo, with an office in Rio de Janeiro, NEOGAMA/BBH
was founded in 1999 by Gama and today employs a staff of approximately
270. In 2002, the agency merged with BBH.