Industry stocks traded on heavy volume today following the announcement of Publicis Groupe's merger with Omnicom. Publicis, Omnicom and Interpublic all rose to new 52-week highs before receding later in trading.
Publicis closed at $78.80 in Paris, up .08 percent, after rising to $83.93 at one point. Some 4.6 million shares changed hands compared to the company's average daily trading volume of 553,868.
Omnicom ended the day at $64.75, down .55 percent, following a day's high of $70.50. Nearly 17.5 million shares were traded compared to an average volume of 1.7 million. Trading in Interpublic, previously thought to be an acquisition target of Publicis, soared to 28.9 million shares up from a typical daily average trading volume of 3.8 million. The stock closed at $16.61, rising 4.7 percent, from Friday's close and down from a high of $17.43 today.
Publicis chief Maurice Lévy and Omnicom CEO John Wren kicked off an investors road show this morning in New York before moving on to Boston and the U.K. They divulged little beyond what they said in a Paris press conference yesterday, telling analysts they decided to merge because of the exponential growth of new media giants like Google, the blurring roles of media and ad agencies, the explosion of big data, and changing consumer behavior as a result of technology.
They also explained where they expect to get $500 million in operational efficiencies. The new Publicis Omnicom Group expects $260 million in savings on third-party services "from increased scale and elimination of duplication" and another $240 million in "efficiencies from pooling of resources and infrastructure."