Friday, August 2, 2013

Omnicom and Publicis. A risky merger

The merger of Omnicom and Publicis, announced on Sunday July 28 is a risky adventure. The executives of the two companies show a lot of chutzpah but can we take for granted their rosy statements?

Of course the figures are fantastic: 14 billions dollars of income for Omnicom, 8 billions for Publicis. The result should be the world's largest advertising agency if...

If the anticoncentration authorities of Washington and Brussels agree to the megamerger which is already criticized by their competitors like Havas and WPP but also by the big clients of the two firms. Coca Cola and Pepsi Cola are not too keen to share the same agency and many giant groups share the same worry of a permanent conflicts of interest.

If the French shareholders realize that the French Publicis will be more and more transferred to Amsterdam and New York and risks to vanish completely from the local scene.

If the Internet giants, Google and Facebook which are collecting the big data all over the Planet let this ambitious new agency stamp on their field and try to explore the promising digital market.

The stunning news of the Publicis-Omnicom mariage is not the end of the story, by far. It is just the first battle of a long war to control and exploit the data of billions of consumers. Nobody, right now can give the name of the victors but the winners will need to have very deep pockets indeed.