Havas takes 51% stake in a joint venture with GIMC

The Havas Group has just announced that it has signed a joint-venture with Guangdong Advertising Group Co. to strengthen its operations in China. The acquisition will see the Havas Group taking up 51% of the resulting Havas GIMC Advertising Co., Ltd., which will operate as an integrated media and creative agency headquartered in Shanghai.

This joint-venture will allow Havas’ clients to tap into the existing full service offering in China, and allow current media clients in this market to take advantage of the GIMC’s buying clout. It will also allow GIMC’s clients to have access to Havas’ global network and creative resources.

The formerly Guangzhou-based Guangdong Advertising Group Co was founded in 1979 and employs around 4500 in 11 tier one and tier two cities. The agency specialises in marketing and communication services with about 300 clients including Dongfeng Nissan, GAC Group, China Mobile, China Telecom, Midea Group and Haitian Seasoning. 85% of its clients are brands that they have been serving for more than 5 years according to the statement. Its operating income for the year ending 2016 was RMB 10.9 billion.

Yannick Bolloré, CEO of the Havas Group, said the move represents a major step in the Havas Group’s expansion in China. “The Chinese market is one of the fastest growing markets in the world and is now ranking second in terms of ad spending which offers outstanding opportunities for brands. We are very excited to join forces with GIMC. Combining our strengths with their capabilities and talent pool, which is the largest in China, will guarantee Havas GIMC Advertising’s clients the best service both in the Chinese market and globally.”

Chen Tianlong, chairman of GIMC commented, “I’m very excited about this partnership. China is not only a scale market, but also a speed market. The joint-venture will leverage creativity, expertise and tools from Havas, and the buying clout and the widest service footprint from GIMC. With this, we can best deliver the scale and the speed needed for our client businesses. More importantly, this joint-venture will be, on the back of Havas global network, the first China based agency with a network dedicated to supporting the international expansion of Chinese companies and bring more Chinese brands globally.”

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