Arnold Acquires Brandhouse

In its effort to build a truly global network, Arnold Worldwide has established a presence in the Pacific Rim through its acquisition of Brandhouse Hale Leonardi, an agency with offices in Sydney and Melbourne, Australia.

The shop will be renamed Brandhouse Arnold Worldwide. Terms were not disclosed.

Brandhouse, which has about $25 million in overall billings, will continue to operate under current management. Clients include Epson, Quattro, People Telecom, Schweppes, BRW Media and Ricoh.

Brandhouse brings to Arnold “a strong presence in the Asia-Pacific [market], a solid Australian management team … and the capacity to make a difference to our new global offering,” said Ed Eskandarian, chairman and CEO of Arnold. Buys or alliances in Asian markets, possibly Japan or Korea, may be on tap next, Eskandarian has said.

From Brandhouse’s point of view, the deal gives the Australian agency access to the larger resources of Boston-based Arnold and its parent firm, Havas Advertising, said Andrew Vidor, managing partner of Brandhouse.

“Being a part of the world is the only way to go, and to have the opportunity to be a part of this creative and strategic group makes the prospect of being connected very exciting,” added Russel Howcroft, also a managing partner.

Arnold’s Australian buy came less than a week after Havas-owned Jordan McGrath Case & Partners/Euro RSCG was brought into alignment with Arnold’s global network [Adweek, Mar. 5]. The 300-person New York shop had previously reported to Havas through the Euro RSCGnet work.

Arnold itself joined Havas in September following the completion of the French company’s buyout of former Arnold parent Snyder Communications.

Arnold’s worldwide network now has overall billings in the $2 billion range. Other member agencies include Ata De Martini in Italy; devarrieuxvillaret in France; La Banda in Spain; Vickers & Benson of Canada; and both Partners BDDH and WCRS in the United Kingdom. Arnold is currently pitching Volkswagen business in Germany with its local market affiliate Rempen & Partners.