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After setting up ROAR, Publicis Groupe acquires Crown Partners

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MUMBAI: It was last week when Publicis Groupe, the French holding company had announced the launch of ROAR, an agency of hand-picked talent drawn from across the digital resources within the group.

To scale up its digital side of the business, the group has acquired Crown Partners, a full service firm that drives commerce and content solutions, based in the United States.

According to WSJ, the group is aiming at generating at least half of its revenue by 2018 from digital. Publicis reported that its digital revenue rose 14 per cent on an organic basis in 2013, with digital representing 38 per cent of the company’s revenue.

Crown Partners will be aligned with Razorfish, to further accelerate the agency’s strong leadership and growth in commerce, marketing and content technology platform-related services.

Founded in 2001 by CEO Richard Hearn and president Mark Kennedy, Crown Partners currently has 150 employees based at its headquarters in Dayton, Ohio and across US offices in New York, Dallas and Denver.

The firm offers technology solutions to Global 2000, Fortune 500 and emerging enterprises, ensuring clients—which include Lands’ End, ASICS, Keurig-Green Mountain, GlaxoSmithKline, St. Jude, United Technologies and David Yurman—achieve their digital goals.

The acquisition supports Razorfish’s commitment to identifying opportunities for business transformation that have commerce at their core. Crown Partner’s healthy business, combined with Razorfish’s approach to creating superior integrated customer experiences on behalf of their clients, will amplify the agency’s ability to provide exceptional services to its clients.

The Crown Partners’ team will join Razorfish Technology Platform Services. Hearn will assume the position of executive lead and president of Razorfish Technology Platform Services, and will report to Razorfish North America CEO Shannon Denton.

“We believe this is a time of great opportunity for businesses that are willing to embrace transformation. The businesses with the best and most consistent customer experience will come out on top, and the only way to win is to effectively leverage technology and data,” mentioned Razorfish global CEO Pete Stein in a statement.

“The integration of Crown Partners within Razorfish reinforces the agency’s technology capabilities in the commerce and retail space and offers increased capitalization on growth opportunities, while ensuring continued talent development and delivery of the highest quality client work,” added Razorfish chairman Rishad Tobaccowala.

Hearn continued, “For the past 13 years Crown Partners has empowered companies to use digital technologies to expedite growth, drive new business and minimize costs. Joining forces with Razorfish will give our shared clients access to unmatched innovation, depth of expertise and balance in platform enabled professional services.”

Razorfish and Crown Partners will also be able to expand an already long list of successful platform implementations with mutual key partners hybris, a SAP company, and Adobe.

hybris president and co-founder Carsten Thoma said, “Crown Partners has been a dynamic force in realising omni-channel commerce solutions leveraging the hybris and SAP platforms. Together with Razorfish, we have a valued partner in the market with the innovation, experience and ambition to change the face of commerce.”

 “It's exciting to think about the potential that will result from an innovative partner like Crown Partners joining forces with a powerful Adobe global partner like Razorfish. This acquisition will further extend Razorfish's current success with providing customers the value and benefit of Adobe Marketing Cloud solutions by growing their web experience and experience-driven commerce practice," concluded Adobe vice president, global alliances Jim Sink.

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