Fueled by Tremendous New Business Momentum, Merged Network to be led by Chris Boothe
March 5, 2019 – Publicis Media today announced the consolidation of two of its global networks – Blue 449 and Spark Foundry – to create one powerhouse global proposition.
Founded on the strong synergies of culture and entrepreneurial spirit that both agencies boast, the new unified network will operate under the Spark Foundry brand in the majority of markets, boosting the agency’s footprint globally.
With this move the new network deepens its presence in Australia, Canada, China, Germany, India, Italy, MENA, Mexico, Poland, Russia, Singapore and Spain, as well as other markets around the world, accelerated through realigning Blue 449 talent and clients to the Spark Foundry brand.
In France, UK and US markets – where Blue 449 is a successful growth business of scale – both brands will be retained and will co-operate closely, with Blue 449 predominantly servicing domestic clients and Spark Foundry focusing on global clients.
“As a brand-led organization, we are committed to our strong agency brands as transformation partners for clients,” says Steve King, CEO, Publicis Media. “Guided by this commitment, we are further scaling Spark Foundry as a global network.”
Spark Foundry’s global evolution through this strategic alliance, builds on notable momentum over the past year, including substantial new business wins such as Marriott and Lenovo (global), Mondelez (multi-market), Macy’s, Audible, and Southwest Airlines in the US, Savola in UAE, and Kumho Tires in Australia.
“I am thrilled to welcome the Blue 449 talent and clients to the Spark Foundry family, said Chris Boothe, Global Brand President, Spark Foundry. “I’m confident these clients will benefit from continuing to work with the talent who know them and their business well, now backed by Spark Foundry’s unique HEAT proposition strongly resonating and delivering for clients around the world.”
Phil Georgiadis, Global Chairman of Blue 449 and Publicis Media UK, has decided to leave the company, having co-founded Blue 449 (formerly Walker Media) in the UK in 1998.
“Now is the right time for me to move on, I have been fully involved and supportive of the new network strategy and I am obviously delighted that Blue 449 will retain its distinctive position in the UK market. This is testament to the whole team under the strong leadership of Simon and in truth they are doing a brilliant job without me,” says Georgiadis. “More recently I have enjoyed my role as Chairman of Publicis Media UK. Having been heavily involved in the decision to move to Television Centre and in the fit out itself I can see it will be a catalyst for even more transformative behaviours and I wish Steve, Sue and everyone based there every success in the future.”
With this evolution, Chris Boothe, Spark Foundry’s Global Brand President will lead the expanded global network. For markets where Blue 449 will continue to operate as a domestic agency of strength, their leadership will continue as follows:
Simon Davis, CEO, Blue 449 UK
David Ehlers, CEO, Blue 449 US
Pascal Crifo, CEO, Blue 449 France
Steve King, added: “I would like to thank Phil for everything he has done in leading Blue 449 and latterly in his role as Chairman of Publicis Media UK. He is without question one of the all-time greats of our industry. His pioneering spirit and entrepreneurial drive is the very reason why he is so highly admired by clients, industry peers and colleagues alike. We will miss him and wish him every success in future.”
ABOUT PUBLICIS MEDIA
Publicis Media is one of the four solutions hubs of Publicis Groupe ([Euronext Paris FR0000130577, CAC 40], alongside Publicis Communications, Publicis Sapient and Publicis Healthcare. Led by Steve King, CEO, Publicis Media is comprised of Starcom, Zenith, Digitas, Spark Foundry, and Performics, powered by digital-first, data-driven global practices that together deliver client value and business transformation. Publicis Media is committed to helping its clients navigate the modern media landscape and is present in more than 100 countries with over 23,500 employees worldwide.
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