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Over the last two days, 100 senior executives from Publicis Groupe's creative networks have gathered in New York to hear Arthur Sadoun, the CEO of Publicis Communications, lay out his vision for the newly-combined forces of Leo Burnett, Saatchi & Saatchi, Publicis Worldwide, BBH, MSL Group and production company Prodigious.
The creative agencies were grouped together under the "Publicis Communications" banner as part of last month's re-organization, which also saw the creation of Publicis Media and Publicis.Sapient.
Mr. Sadoun's changes include the formation of a global creative board, led by Leo Burnett global CCO Mark Tutssel, and a nine-strong group called the Global ComEx, made up of one or two leaders from each of the networks.
At the same time, Mr. Sadoun, who officially started his new role on Jan. 2, has announced plans to roll out start-up incubator, the Drugstore – already in London, Johannesburg, Sydney and Zurich – in all key markets by the end of the year, as Publicis Communications strives to provide the extra services and innovations that enable agencies to work more closely with clients.
In a statement, Mr. Sadoun said, "By investing in our creative excellence, boosting our networks with the right capabilities and reinventing our internal structures, we will make all of our brands stronger, both individually and collectively."
This week's developments are designed to accelerate the move away from silos, and are part of a plan put together by Mr. Sadoun along with the Global ComEx members (including Robert Senior and Justin Billingsley from Saatchi & Saatchi; Tom Bernardin and Rich Stoddard from Leo Burnett; Andrew Bruce and Loris Nold from Publicis Worldwide; Neil Munn from BBH; Guillaume Herbette from MSL Group; and Jean-François Valent from Prodigious) during a two-day meeting in Paris before Christmas.
As well as network heads, the Global ComEx includes four new roles: a chief talent officer, a chief transformation officer, a global CFO and a North America CFO. An executive who attended the meeting claimed that the CFO roles were not about cost-controlling, but about bringing senior business partners on board.
The cornerstone of Mr. Sadoun's plan is to get all the networks co-operating, so that they can tap into the Publicis Communications' best resources around the world, both for existing clients and for pitches. The creative hub's structure is designed to be simple, in order to encourage an entrepreneurial spirit.
Mr. Sadoun, who became CEO of Publicis Worldwide in 2013, was named leader of the new Publicis Communications in December, which is widely believed to have boosted his chances of taking over as Publicis Groupe CEO when Maurice Lévy retires next year.