Havas : advertising & marketing profile

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Havas is the global network known until 2012 as Euro RSCG and more recently as Havas Worldwide. (The "worldwide" tag was officially dropped in 2016). It is one of France's two leading home-grown advertising brands (alongside Publicis), with a network which extends across 75 countries. After a turbulent few years, the agency returned to strength in 2006 under a new management team, and was rewarded with the accolade of Agency of the Year from leading trade publications in both the US and UK. However global performance has been mercurial since then, and major multi-national account wins few and far between. Havas is the main advertising brand within Havas Group, and the agency recently reabsorbed what was previously a broad marketing services offering. As a result, standalone divisions like Havas Media and Havas Digital are all now rebundled back together under a single shared P&L. The agency is partnered within the group by second-string creative network Arnold Worldwide as well as several separately branded creative agencies, especially in France. For example, Euro RSCG's former flagship outpost in Paris maintains its own distinct identity under the group umbrella as BETC.

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Adbrands Daily Update 14th Oct 2020: Havas announced the creation of a new global network dedicated to customer experience. Around 20 agencies globally will make up the new Havas CX entity, and will retaion their own separate identities for the time being at least. Core of the business is digital agency BETC Fullsix, supported by sister unit Ekina and CRM specialist Havas Helia. It will also have access to other group resources in order to provide a presence in 18 Havas Village hubs globally. The resource will be overseen by global COO Yann Doussot.

Adbrands Daily Update 4th Sep 2019: Buzzman, one of the biggest and most admired of France's comparatively few remaining creative independents, has joined the Havas network with the sale of a 51% stake. Founded and led by Georges Mohammed-Chérif, the agency has engaged in negotiations with several groups over the years, and came close to a deal with Saatchi & Saatchi several years ago. However, it is Havas which finally takes the prize. Mohammed-Chérif will remain as CEO and the agency will continue to operate as a standalone business. "In recent years," he said, "Buzzman has been the target of repeated approaches from leading communications and consulting groups. The reason why we have now chosen to go with Havas is Yannick Bolloré's readiness to listen, and his grasp of what it is that underpins our extraordinary creativity: our independence. The one non-negotiable condition for joining the Havas Group was maintaining our autonomy. We will now be able to take advantage of the synergies offered by the network and expand the field of opportunities, whilst holding fast to Buzzman's recipe for success from the outset: exacting standards, outspokenness and boldness."

Adbrands Daily Update 16th Aug 2019: "Finally Your Own Space". We never cease to be impressed at the consistent quality of all Ikea's ads from around the globe. Different agencies, different local marketing directors, but they're all of a uniformly high standard. Always warmly well observed, often very funny. This new set from the Netherlands, from Havas Lemz, is no exception. There are three spots in all, each with the same set-up, but a different punchline. (Great use of musical cues, too). Getting your own space finally doesn't just apply to kids moving out of home, after all...

Adbrands Daily Update 16th May 2019: Havas merged several of its existing free-standing PR agencies into a new global network under the name Red Havas. The newly created business combines the group's North American Havas PR agency with Havas PR in the UK and the Red Agency in Australia and several other Asian markets. In addition to traditional PR, it will offer expanded social media, content development and experiential capabilities. Further outposts will launch in due course in Tokyo and South America. However, several of the group's other PR agencies, such as One Green Bean in Australia and the UK, Cake and Havas Formula will remain separate under the overall Havas PR banner.

Adbrands Daily Update 11th Jan 2019: Havas promoted Chris Hirst, previously CEO of Havas Creative UK & Europe, to the role of global CEO, filling a role that has been in effect vacant since the departure of Andrew Benett in 2017. Group CEO Yannick Bolloré nominally took up the role of head of the creative network at that point, but most responsibility was devolved to regional leaders. "Chris is a transformative, world-class leader, who brings invaluable expertise that elevates our creative agencies and operations," said Bolloré. "His acumen will bring immense value to our clients and employees, not just in Europe but around the globe."

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