Havas' MPG and Aegis Media have formed a strategic partnership with their out-out-home assets in the U.S., forging a link between MPG's Chrysalis and Aegis' Posterscope.
Combined billings of Posterscope and Chrysalis exceed $300 million, with Posterscope accounting for more than 80 percent of the total.
The partnership, which takes effect next month, has resulted in a management shakeup in which Connie Garrido, president of Chrysalis, takes on the role of CEO of Posterscope U.S., effectively replacing president Todd Hansen, who has left the agency. In addition, Ray Rotolo, managing director of Chrysalis, has been named evp of Posterscope U.S.
With Garrido and Rotolo now focusing on Posterscope, Lauren Barbara, svp of Chrysalis, will assume day-to-day responsibility at the MPG OOH unit, the agencies said.
The shops said that the alliance is intended to combine the buying power of Posterscope with the strategic planning capabilities of Chrysalis. A rep downplayed any suggestion that the alliance was a new step toward a broader alliance between Aegis and Havas. French businessman and Havas chairman Vincent Bollore has large stakes in both companies and has long pushed for a union between the firms.
The U.S. hookup mirrors a similar relationship the two OOH shops have forged in the U.K., an MPG rep said.
Commenting on the alliance, Maria Luisa Francoli, global CEO, MPG, said in a statement: "We believe the strategic importance of the out-of-home medium will grow due to the different role it will play in the new communications world. A partnership with Posterscope will further strengthen our unique OOH offer to our clients, giving us greater scale and influence in the market."
Added Annie Rickard, president, Posterscope Worldwide: "We already work with MPG in a number of markets. We admire Chrysalis, Connie and her team, so this partnership in the U.S. makes perfect sense."
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