Burnett Buys Control of Israeli Agency

CHICAGO Publicis Groupe’s Leo Burnett Worldwide has purchased a 51 percent stake in Tel Aviv, Israel-based agency Geller-Nessis Marketing and Communication.

The two agencies share a client in Procter & Gamble and, according to Burnett worldwide CEO Tom Bernardin, a common philosophy. Terms were not disclosed.

“We see Geller-Nessis as a key strategic partner because its capabilities mirror Leo Burnett and [below-the-line affiliate] Arc’s so closely—they’re quite simply our kind of people,” Bernardin said in a statement.

The deal gives Burnett’s holding company another asset in the Israeli market. Paris-based Publicis already owns a majority stake in Publicis Ariely and is affiliated with Saatchi & Saatchi BBR in Israel.

Founded in 1985, Geller-Nessis has 75 employees. In addition to P&G, the agency’s clients include Coca-Cola’s Sprite and Fanta brands, Diners Club International and local retailer Honigman.

The deal is pending approval from the Israeli government’s Anti-Trust Authority.