Exclusive: Maurice Levy on Law & Kenneth acquisition

Last year, Publicis India told Storyboard of its ambition to make it to the top three of Indian advertising. Maurice Levy, Chairman and CEO, Publicis Groupe, spoke to Storyboard about the acquisition and Publicis’ future role in India.

Publicis Groupe announced the majority acquisition of Law & Kenneth, an independent Indian advertising and digital agency, to be integrated into Saatchi & Saatchi India today. Saatchi & Saatchi India will be re-branded as L&K Saatchi & Saatchi, which will reinforce the agency's presence in India between its offices in Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai and Kolkata.

Law & Kenneth Chairman and Managing Director, Praveen Kenneth, will manage the new entity in the same role. He will join the Saatchi & Saatchi Asia-Pacific board and will directly report to Chris Foster, Chairman and CEO of Saatchi & Saatchi Asia-Pacific. Praveen Kenneth was CEO of Publicis India from 1999-2003.

The Law & Kenneth management team will assume the management operations of Saatchi & Saatchi India (L&K Saatchi & Saatchi), creating a value proposition combining the best of both agencies. The senior management team of Law & Kenneth including, Anil S Nair (CEO and Managing Partner), Sandhya Srinivasan (Chief Strategy Officer and Managing Partner) and Anil K Nair (CEO Digital and Managing Partner) will continue their respective roles in the new entity. Law & Kenneth's CFO Vijay Agarwal will report to Johann Xavier, Regional CFO for Saatchi & Saatchi Asia-Pacific.

Chris Foster stated, "Law & Kenneth brings an ideas-driven entrepreneurial spirit and a comprehensive range of services to Saatchi & Saatchi, including advertising, design and importantly a strongly integrated digital presence with its digital business ‘Digital Law & Kenneth.’ The Saatchi & Saatchi global network is dedicated to strengthening its focus in Asia-Pacific, home to 60% of the world's population and several vibrant economies. India is a lynchpin in this equation. We believe that with our combined knowledge, skills and creativity, nothing is impossible in this country and this market."

Praveen Kenneth added, "Law & Kenneth was born out of passion and has always focused on adding value to client brands and to the lives of people we touch every day. This has helped us become the largest independent agency in India in just over 10 years. Our story is an example of the Saatchi & Saatchi spirit of “Nothing Is Impossible.” The combination of Law & Kenneth's stability, size proven success and experience in India's dynamic market place, together with Saatchi & Saatchi's iconic status and mystique, results in a creative powerhouse that is L&K Saatchi & Saatchi. Success for us will be to use the philosophy of Lovemarks to win the hearts of Indian consumers and grow our clients' brands and reputations."

This acquisition follows those of Beehive into Publicis Worldwide in October 2013 and Neev into Razorfish earlier in 2013. The formation of L&K Saatchi & Saatchi is the next in a series of steps the network is undertaking to restructure its India operations and optimize the massive potential for growth present in the market.


Published Date: Jan 30, 2014 11:30 am | Updated Date: Jan 30, 2014 01:21 pm