Publicis to Delist NYSE Shares

BOSTON Publicis Groupe said it would apply for the voluntary delisting of its American Depositary Receipts from the New York Stock Exchange.

The holding company cited as its rationales low ADR trading volume (about 1 percent of its total share volume); its adoption of International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) in 2005; and a general desire to cut costs.

Paris-based Publicis said it would file its delisting application with the Securities & Exchange Commission on Sept. 17, and that the delisting would become effective on Sept. 27. At that point, the ADRs would be tradable on the U.S. over-the-counter market.

In a related move, the company has filed papers with the SEC to terminate the domestic registration of its securities, which immediately suspends its U.S. financial reporting obligations. That suspension should become permanent in 90 days.

Publicis’ NYSE shares closed yesterday at $42.40, unchanged from the previous day. The 52-week high was $49.40, the low $36.81.

The delisting and deregistration will have no impact on Publicis’ primary listing of its ordinary shares and other securities on the Euronext in Paris.

Along with its eponymous agency network, Publicis also owns Digitas, Fallon, Leo Burnett, Saatchi & Saatchi and Starcom MediaVest Group, among others.

The company’s rival French holding company Havas—parent to Arnold, Euro RSCG and MPG—delisted in the U.S. last year.

While Havas has long struggled, Publicis of late has turned in generally positive financial performances. The company has been on a buying spree, acquiring numerous agencies in recent months, including European mobile marketing shop Phonevalley earlier in the week. It closed on its Digitas acquisition as the year began.