Hyperactive Publicis Groupe, now the proud owner of $3.7bn Sapient, is tying up a much smaller deal – but an interesting one – for French press agency Relaxnews. Publicis is bidding €15m for Relaxnews, which employs about 100 people.
Relaxnews, which has a feeder deal with the much larger Agence France Presse (AFP) recently launched what ti claims is the world’s first platform combining data, content and services for brands and media. The AFP-Relaxnews newswire now has over 200 clients worldwide including Getty Images, Globo, Microsoft and Yahoo.
Relaxnews will come under the ZenithOptimedia network but also work with other Publicis divisions. The agency will retain its current management team under Jerome and Pierre Doncieux who would report to Sebastien Danet, global managing partner at ZenithOptimedia.
Danet says: “Bringing Relaxnews into the Groupe would allow us to combine our leadership in digital with their unmatched expertise in today’s content revolution. The synergies between these two pillars will transform media platforms for the benefit of our clients.”
There’s quite a difference between real news and branded news, but it seems to be the way the world is headed. One of the issues with the proliferation of online video news is funding and Publicis and its clients have the deep pockets to provide it.