IPG Chief Quells Staffers' Fear of Merger in Wake of POG Fail

Roth: 'Bigger Doesn't Mean Better'

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Michael Roth
Michael Roth

In an internal memo to employees, Interpublic Group CEO Michael Roth attempts to quell any fears that IPG might engage in a merger in the wake of Publicis and Omnicom's failed pairing. The communication follows analysts' predictions that more mergers will follow the collapse of the Publicis-Omnicom deal and that IPG is a likely contender. Here are excerpts from his note, which Ad Age obtained:

Large-scale mergers are difficult to accomplish, especially when there are two different company cultures at work.

As you know, here at IPG, we've chosen to remain out of the chatter surrounding this transaction, going back to the point at which it was announced, almost a year ago. Our only specific commentary was in a memo to you, our colleagues, when the deal was originally announced. As you may recall, we titled the memo "Too Big to Fail?" – a subject line that has now been proven somewhat prescient...

...What's the outlook after today's news? Our clients, as always, continue to be our primary focus. That's the key message we called out when Omnicom and Publicis originally announced their ambition to be the biggest marketing services company in the world. As we said then, bigger doesn't mean better in terms of the quality of our thinking or our dedication to clients, which is what it's ultimately all about in our business.

With the breakdown of the "POG" merger, competitors who have no knowledge of the situation are raising speculation about the possibility of future consolidation in our industry and what this might mean for us. As I have said before, there is no compelling reason for IPG to merge with another firm – we are competing at the highest levels and are winning business from our largest peers. We do not have gaps in our offering, either geographically or by marketing discipline, and we are backed by a powerful balance sheet.

Our agencies work with the world's best marketers. We have the right assets to succeed. And we're winning in the marketplace. That's the news we should all plan to focus on today and going forward.

Thank you, as always, for your dedication and support.


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