They do say them thar tectonic plates in adland are shifting and the latest M&A global table from global marketing consultancy R3 shows just that with two big consultancies, Accenture and Capgemini, leading the way with the biggest deals – German creative tech company Mackevision for Accenture and US digital customer engagement agency LiquidHub for Capgemini – while the ad holding companies lag.
Dentsu is still the busiest agency acquirer with Omnicom doing two medium-sized deals. WPP, long the most active M&A buyer, did five deals up to and including May but they’re small bolt-on acquisitions.
It’s easy to conclude that the ad holding companies, struggling for growth, have spent their money and are now being outmatched in the tech space particularly by the cash-rich consultancies. If they want to stay in the game then some disposals are probably required.