Omnicom Merges Ketchum, Pleon PR Firms

NEW YORK Omnicom Group said it is combining its Ketchum and Pleon public relations firms, a move the holding company claims “marks one of the largest mergers ever in the public relations industry.”

The combined 2,000-person entity will be called Ketchum worldwide and Ketchum Pleon in the U.K. and some European markets. It will operate 103 offices in 66 countries.

Omnicom said the union creates a formidable global player, based on Ketchum’s 50-country reach, with an entrepreneurial and strategic bent, owing to Pleon’s business approach.

Raymond Kotcher, senior partner and CEO at Ketchum, said: “By combining operations, we create a platform that ensures we will continue to deliver demonstrable value for our clients everywhere they do business and well into the future.”

Kotcher retains overall leadership of the group, and Timo Sieg, who has been chairman and CEO of Pleon, now holds those titles for agency operations in Europe.

Global headquarters will be in New York, with the European HQ in Dusseldorf, Germany.

The merger will be completed January 1, 2010.