Publicis Buys Shop in India

CHICAGO Continuing a string of moves designed to bolster its operations worldwide, Publicis Groupe has acquired a majority stake in Delhi, India-based agency Capital Advertising.

The acquisition adds another agency to the Paris-based holding company’s presence in one of the fastest growing advertising markets in the world. In addition to the established Indian offices of global networks such as Saatchi & Saatchi, Publicis Worldwide and Leo Burnett, the company also owns local marketing services agency Solutions.

Financial terms of the Capital deal were not disclosed.

“India is a very important market,” said Olivier Fleurot, executive chairman of Publicis Worldwide, in a statement. “Not only does Capital allow us to increase our presence in this rapid-growth market, but it also strengthens our offer in the capital, which is the Indian advertising industry’s fastest growing zone.”

While Capital will operate autonomously, the agency’s founding directors, Sunil Sachdeva and Prasad Subramaniam, will report to Matthew Godfrey, CEO of Publicis Asia.

Publicis has not curtailed its acquisitive ways since closing on its $1.3 billion purchase of Boston-based i-shop Digitas in January. Many of the buys have been in the digital space, including two Paris-based acquisitions this month: i-shop Wcube and mobile agency Phonevalley. In June, Publicis added French digital shop Business Interactif, followed by Chinese interactive firm CCG in July.

The company has also recently added muscle in European media (via Italian firm Muraglia, Calzolari & Associates) and made buys to shore up its medical marketing and consulting practices.

Publicis rival Havas made a move of its own this month, increasing its minority stake in Middle East luxury marketing network Chalhoub Group to a 50/50 split with current Chalhoub management. Havas said the move was part of long-term strategic plan aimed at making the Paris-based company a player in the region.