Havas has finalised its takeover of Work Club, which seems to have been rumbling on all year.
Work Club, a digital and social agency, is the second big payday for chairman and co-founder Jon Claydon (left) who sold his Claydon Heeley sales promotion company to Omnicom in 1996. The various partners have signed a six-year earn-out deal.
Work Club will now be known as Havas Work Club and be part of the Havas group’s Havas Worldwide agency (HW was formerly Euro RSCG). The Havas strategy, originally under former CEO David Jones and now new boss Yannick Bollore, seems to be to create a big multinational full-service agency under the HW brand rather than compete with much larger holding companies like WPP and French rival Publicis Groupe. It still has a separate media agency and the Arnold Worldwide network but the Bollore-dominated company (father Vincent is the biggest shareholder) stands or falls with Havas Worldwide.
Formerly independent digital agencies seem to be dropping into the laps of traditional agency groups like ripe plums these days. The process began with AKQA selling to WPP and continued with the sale of LBi to Publicis Groupe and Profero to IPG’s Lowe & Partners.