Arthur Sadoun tells Publicis achieving organic growth 'is in the hands of everyone'
Bad clients and penny-pinching reviews continue to be hot-button topics for the industry, and are not going away anytime soon: one soothsayer tells Ad Age to get ready for a Mediapalooza of sorts in the first quarter of 2020. That person says at least two big reviews expected to kick off in the New Year will be focused on driving costs down.
But for Publicis Groupe Chairman-CEO Arthur Sadoun, the next year is hoped to be about organic growth. Sadoun sent a memo to staff, which was obtained by Ad Age, touting all of its recent wins.
“After a red-hot summer of wins, including BT, LVMH, Novartis, Mondelez and Disney, things haven’t cooled off in the fall,” Sadoun tells employees, highlighting recent wins AXA and Nivea, announced last week. He details in his memo that the AXA review was a “10-month battle” and Nivea, a four-month process. Sadoun also reveals a previously un-announced win of Danone in China, which he calls “one of the most competitive pitches in the region this year.”
While praising the group’s efforts in winning new business in 2019, he asserts that “2020 has to be the year where we transform that into organic growth.” The holding company, while reporting revenue increases in recent financial quarters, has struggled to post organic growth. In its most-recent third quarter, reported last month, Publicis saw an organic decline of 2.7 percent and forecast a further 2.5 percent decrease for the full year.
“While new business is often run by a tight team, organic growth is in the hands of everyone, and we’re expecting everyone to deliver,” Sadoun writes.
BBH aims to finally shatter the glass ceiling
The Women’s Entrepreneurship Day Organization is teaming up with BBH in the hopes that a new national post-Thanksgiving holiday will catch on, one dedicated to supporting women. In the spirit of Small Business Saturday and Giving Tuesday that follow Thanksgiving, BBH is introducing Choose Women Wednesday. The holiday, to be introduced the Wednesday after Thanksgiving (Dec. 4), aims to encourage people to shop at women-owned businesses, read books by female authors and listen to female musicians, while promoting and mentoring women to “close the gender gap once and for all,” the agency says. The effort is being supported by a social media campaign that includes the hashtag #ChooseWOMEN and a film directed by Station Films’ Ssong Yang that depicts, quite literally, the shattering of the glass ceiling. Later in the month, Instagram users will be encouraged to use the AR filter with a breaking glass effect created by BBH. “When you hear stats like ‘it will take 208 years to achieve gender equality in the U.S.,’ you can shake your head in disbelief,” says Marta Ibarrondo, group creative director at BBH New York. “Or take action by choosing to create, persevere and demand the same rights as men.”
Shop wants clients to walk the walk on being 'purpose-driven'
Independent agency Co:Collective is taking a step beyond creating purpose-driven marketing campaigns for its clients by opening a new practice that will help them “build purpose-led businesses from the inside out.” Called the Organization & Culture Design, the practice aims to build “more empowered and innovative cultures.” The practice will be run by Kit Krugman, the former president of the organization for empowering female leaders, Women in Innovation (WIN). Co:Collective says before launching this official practice, the agency helped enact cultural change within clients like The Museum of Modern Art, MetLife and Puma.
“Today’s organizations aren’t designed to meet the needs of a new generation of employees seeking community, meaning and equity in the workplace.” Krugman says, “Looking for meaning and a mission, Gen Z employees are instead faced with structures and processes that are a hangover from the industrial era: stiff silos and outdated power dynamics. We need to embrace a broader set of goals than shareholder value, and design organizations that optimize, not repress, critical skills like creativity, collaboration and leadership in diverse teams.”
WPP's largest European campus opens its doors
WPP this week cut the ribbon on its new campus, La Matriz, in Madrid. Its largest European campus to date, La Matriz is around 377,000 square feet and sits in the former Telefónica headquarters on Calle de Ríos Rosas in the Chamberí neighborhood of central Madrid. It spans more than six floors and will house 2,500 employees across WPP’s agencies in Madrid. The campus aims to be a creative hub for the city, fueling collaboration among its agencies and the wider industry, where other entities can rent social and event space. “This significant investment is a sign of our commitment to Spain, to serving the Spanish business community and to providing our people with the best working environment,” says WPP CEO Mark Read. WPP already has campuses major hubs including London and New York with plans to open additional complexes in San Francisco and India.
S4 Capital companies also move in together
Martin Sorrell’s S4 Capital is also making moves to integrate its various companies. This week IMA moved in with MediaMonks, the shop it merged with in August. The two companies’ L.A. operations now reside in the recently-opened content studios on Abbot Kinney. (IMA has an additional office in New York.) S4 says the two companies will work together on “shared” U.S. clients including HP, Microsoft, Coty and Amazon. Maddie Raedts, chief creative officer of IMA, says “this is the next logical step” in its merger with MediaMonks.
Wins of the week
Bayer Crop Science U.S. named BBDO Atlanta and HLK and OBP in St. Louis as its creative agencies of record. BBDO will handle the Bayer Crop Protection portfolio including herbicides, fungicides and insecticides for row crops and horticulture as well as the company's new rewards program. HLK will support Channel brand seed, regional seed brands, the company’s trait portfolio, and integrated systems such as the Roundup Ready Xtend Crop System. OBP will be responsible for seed brands Dekalb, Asgrow, Deltapine and WestBred. Barefoot Proximity in Cincinnati and Rhea & Kaiser in Naperville, Illinois, have also been brought on. Barefoot Proximity will handle portfolio strategy and measurement, digital engagement and multichannel marketing. Rhea & Kaiser will lead media planning and placement. The changes take effect in “Crop Year 2021” but planning for that season begins in early 2020.
WPP’s Mindshare retained the global media account of Lufthansa and its sister group Swiss Air following a review. The agency has been leading the company's media from its Frankfurt office since 2000 and this marks the second defense of the account in five years. Mindshare also picked up Austrian Airlines as part of the review, which ran from July to September.
RoC, acquired by Gryphon Investors of Johnson & Johnson earlier this year, selected Mother in New York as its lead creative agency. The agency expects to debut its first brand campaign for the anti-aging skincare brand in early 2020. “Mother’s unique blend of creativity, strategic insight and consumer obsession will allow us to bring compelling creative work that delivers on our ambitions for brand development,” says Hillary Hutcheson, chief marketing officer of RoC Skincare.
A tale of two big executive shifts
Full-service agency Quigley-Simpson appointed Carl Fremont as chief executive officer. Fremont is a WPP alum having previously spent time as the global chief digital officer of Wavemaker and most recently the business development and client lead at Wunderman Thompson. While he spent 13 years at Digitas before joining Wavemaker, Fremont actually started his career at Wunderman, before it merged with JWT, as a media director and senior VP from 1984 to 2000.
Wunderman Thompson named Anthony Romano as president of its Minneapolis office. In this position, he will oversee both WPP’s Wunderman Thompson and Mirum hubs in Minneapolis. He reports to Wunderman Thompson Central CEO Ian Sohn. Romano is the former CEO of BBH New York.