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Dentsu Aegis Network

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Dentsu Aegis Network is the umbrella for all international operations of Japanese market giant Dentsu. It was formed in Spring 2013 from the merger of the existing Dentsu Network entity with newly acquired UK-based marketing group Aegis plc, whose biggest subsidiary was the worldwide media network Carat. Uniquely among the top tier of marketing companies, Aegis had for almost its entire history had no traditional advertising network within its portfolio, operating instead as a media independent organisation. Nevertheless, the group built up a collection of other interests over the years including the digital network Isobar and market researcher Synovate (later sold), as well as second-string media agency Vizeum. Its effective independence made the group a prime candidate for takeover from 2005 onwards. Several bidders made formal or informal offers, but the most persistent suitor was Vincent Bolloré, chairman of rival group Havas, who became the biggest shareholder in Aegis, with the unspoken goal of encouraging a merger of the two groups. However, his repeated attempts to win a seat on the Aegis board were rebuffed, and he eventually abandoned the idea of combining Aegis and Havas in 2011. Instead, the following year, Bolloré gave his support to a proposed takeover of Aegis by Dentsu for up to £3.2bn.

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Dentsu Aegis Network

Recent stories from Adbrands Weekly Update. (See Adbrands Account Assignments for all account moves)

Adbrands Weekly Update 30th Aug 2018: Havas Media's US office took a heavy blow with the loss of LVMH's local business to a newly created entity within Dentsu Aegis Network. With annual billings of around $400m on brands including Dior Parfums, Louis Vuitton, Hennessy and Bulgari, it has been one of Havas Media's top three or four local accounts. Havas Media continues to work for the luxury giant in other markets.

Adbrands Weekly Update 21st Dec 2017: Jaguar Land Rover is said to be in final negotiations to transfer its global media account to Dentsu Aegis Network, after 17 years at Mindshare. However, also this week, Microsoft called a closed contest for media planning and buying putting incumbent Carat up against Interpublic's UM and Initiative networks, from whom the business was poached three years ago. DAN is already defending reviews of global Adidas and Mondelez North America. Separately, the groupsnapped up technology media agency DWA, appointed only last week as Cisco Systems' new global media shop. The agency has become a division of DAN's data and CRM network Merkle.

Adbrands Weekly Update 23rd November 2017: Australia's once-mighty Mitchell & Partners media brand has finally been consigned to history. Dentsu Aegis Network announced the rebranding of what has most recently been known as Dentsu Mitchell as the local arm of its recently launched dentsu x international network, operating across multiple markets in Asia and Europe alongside sister networks Carat and Vizeum. Independent agency Mitchell & Partners became Australia's biggest media agency in the 1990s, and in 2008 was the first ever to top billings of A$1bn. Two years later it was acquired by Aegis, and many of its biggest clients were transferred across to that group's own Carat network. The gradual down-scaling of Mitchells continued following the acquisition in turn of Aegis by Dentsu in 2013 and the departure of original founder Harold Mitchell and his son Stuart.

Adbrands Weekly Update 2nd Nov 2017: Stef Calcraft, Mother's co-founder and former managing partner, was named as executive chairman of Dentsu Aegis Network UK & Ireland, overseeing the local operations of Carat, Vizeum, Isobar, McGarryBowen and other brands. Calcraft stepped down from Mother two years ago.

Adbrands Weekly Update 25th Oct 2017: Dentsu Aegis Network is taking its first steps into South Africa's creative advertising community with a deal to acquire local independent FoxP2 for an undisclosed sum. The deal is subject to regulatory approval. "FoxP2 has declined many approaches from global advertising networks over the last decade," said FoxP2 CEO Charl Thom. "We never wanted to be another arrow in a quiver but, given the fact that Dentsu Aegis Network does not have a creative agency in South Africa, the opportunity for us as entrepreneurial founders to retain a meaningful stake in the business and, most importantly, the opportunity to truly stretch and improve our offering to our clients, made this a natural next step in FoxP2’s evolution." Clients include Diageo, Hyundai and First National Bank.

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