Publicis Groupe today acquired a majority 51 per cent stake in Law & Kenneth, the largest independent Indian advertising and digital agency, for an undisclosed sum.
This will be the French advertising and communications giant's eighth acquisition in India since the past two years, and the second major deal since its merger with Omnicom in July 2013 (See: Publicis, Omnicom merging to create an advertising powerhouse ).
Shortly after the merger it acquired Mumbai-based creative shop Beehive (See:Publicis Groupe acquires majority stake in Mumbai's Beehive Communications)
Law & Kenneth will be integrated into Publicis subsidiary Saatchi & Saatchi India.
Saatchi & Saatchi India will be re-branded as L&K Saatchi & Saatchi (Law & Kenneth Saatchi & Saatchi), reinforcing the agency's presence in India between its offices in Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai and Kolkata.
Founded in 2004 by Praveen Kenneth and Andy Law, along investor and co-founder, Anita Roddick of The Body Shop, Law & Kenneth has since grown into a full service agency specialising in traditional and digital advertising, branding and marketing.
With 285 professionals, the agency has local and global clients, including Renault, Dabur, TATA AIG Insurance, Godrej, ITC, Reliance, Idea and Hero MotoCorp.
Publicis said thatLaw & Kenneth chairman and managing director Praveen Kenneth will manage the new entity in the same role. He will join the Saatchi & Saatchi Asia-Pacific board and will work directly with Chris Foster, chairman and CEO of Saatchi & Saatchi Asia-Pacific.
Praveen Kenneth said, "Law & Kenneth was born out of passion and has always focused on adding value to client brands and to the lives of people we touch every day. This has helped us become the largest independent agency in India in just over 10 years. Our story is an example of the Saatchi & Saatchi spirit of Nothing Is Impossible.''
''The combination of Law & Kenneth's stability, size proven success and experience in India's dynamic market place, together with Saatchi & Saatchi's iconic status and mystique, results in a creative powerhouse that is L&K Saatchi & Saatchi," he added.
Paris-based Publicis today has 10 global networks present in the Indian market, Publicis Worldwide, Saatchi & Saatchi, Leo Burnett, BBH, Starcom Mediavest Group, ZenithOptimedia, DigitasLBi, VivaKi, MSLGROUP and PHCG.