FCB Global and McCann Worldgroup in Indonesia have today confirmed a new legal ownership structure, under the entity Digital SEA Indonesia. Digital SEA Indonesia will retain relationships with both global networks as an affiliate. The agencies will co-locate and share back-office services, while maintaining the independence of each network. Under this arrangement, both McCann Worldgroup and FCB networks will continue as independent brands, servicing their respective clients.
In a statement to Marketing Interactive, a spokesperson said that this shift will help the operation to better tap into local expertise, talent and creativity, leveraging FCB Global and McCann Worldgroup’s integrated creative and strategic capabilities. The spokesperson was however unable to comment on redundancies and said it was an “ongoing process” and the network will continuing to evaluate based on business needs. It will however “keep key personnel and continuing hiring as per requirements.”
Meanwhile, Bhaskar Rao, who has over 25 years of experience in Indonesia, managing both FCB’s and McCann Worldgroup’s Jakarta businesses, will oversee the combined operation. Rao was previously holding the title of CEO at McCann for over a year and also spent 15 years of his career growing FCB.
According to his LinkedIn, Digital SEA is described as “a holding company for advertising communications and marketing services". The first investments are in Indonesia. With a full-service team of over 70 professionals, Digital SEA is in discussions with partners in management consulting, public relations, data sciences, marketing research, social media specialists, and other like-minded companies who wish to participate in one of Asia’s most exciting markets. Currently, the brands McCann and FCB work on include Perfetti van Mele, Reckitt Benckiser, Cereal Partner Networks, General Motors, Mayora, Wipro Unza, Fonterra and Levis.
Meanwhile, at the start of 2018, FCB Malaysia also changed its ownership in an equal three-way partnership between Ong Shi-Ping, chief creative officer; Liew Kok Heng, CFO and Shaun Tay, CEO. Tay then said that despite the buyout, the agency remains “very much a part of the FCB Worldwide network” as an affiliate business partner.
At the start of the year, sister agency MullenLowe Malaysia under the IPG network also changed ownership. CEO Adrian Sng obtained full ownership of the business and the agency was renamed as MullenLowe Sng & Partners Malaysia. The company said the move provides "greater agility for the operation in Malaysia to be more responsive to the needs of its clients and the local market". The agency is still part of the MullenLowe Group network as an affiliate business partner, retaining access to the network’s global tools and expertise.