Blockchain is a buzzword for 2018: it powers cryptocurrencies and can turn a company into a magnet for funding.
Havas is the first of the big communications groups to buy into the hype with the launch of Havas Blockchain, a “fully integrated communications offering” whose purpose is almost as mysterious as the rise and fall of Bitcoin’s fortunes.
Havas Blockchain is a joint venture between AMO, the Havas-owned corporate and financial communications specialist, and a French consultancy called Blockchain Partner.
It looks like Havas’ role in the new partnership is to do PR for companies who are working in the cryptocurrency and blockchain space, and to provide an international launch pad for Blockchain Partner, which currently works for French clients including BNP Paribas, Banque de France and SNCF, but wants to boldly go into Russia, Korea, Japan and Singapore.
Havas Blockchain will concentrate initially on the murky world of cryptocurrency fundraising, which either accelerates and democratizes the venture capital process or is just plain crazy, depending on your point of view. Havas says ICOs (Initial Coin Offerings) have raised $5.6 billion over the last 12 months.
The first project is working on an ICO for Talao, a global platform connecting freelance talent and major corporations. Stéphane Fouks (above), who is vice president of Havas Group and an adviser to Talao, says: “Joining forces with Blockchain Partner will enable us to provide full-service support to firms eager to develop blockchain-based solutions. Our aim is to make Havas Group a key player in this new economy.”
On a less cryptic level, Havas Blockchain will also earn cold hard cash from training, coaching, public affairs, and global communications support for firms operating in the blockchain ecosystem.