Digital ads empire Publicis buys Sapient in US$3.7bn deal

3 Nov 2014

Publicis Groupe’s ambitions to lead the digital ads economy have been boosted by the acquisition of Sapient for US$3.7bn in cash. The new platform will be know as Publicis.Sapient.

The acquisition price is a 44pc premium on Sapient’s stock price as of Friday, 31 October.

Sapient stockholders will receive US$25 in cash for each share.

The boards of both companies voted unanimously on the transaction.

The motivation behind the massive deal is to establish Publicis Groupe as an advertising leader in the digital age.

Leading in the digital age

The move will put both companies at the nexus of the convergence of communication, marketing, commerce and technology.

“Sapient is a ‘crown jewel,’ a one-of-a-kind company born in the technology space with strengths in marketing, communications, consulting and omni-channel commerce, all of which are equally important to best help clients achieve their digital transformation,” said Maurice Lévy, chairman and CEO of Publicis Groupe.

“It will also give Publicis Groupe access to new markets and creating new revenue streams. This acquisition fulfils many of Publicis Groupe’s objectives: we will enhance our leadership position in digital, achieve our goal of deriving 50pc of our revenues from digital and technology three years ahead of our 2018 plan, and leverage technology and consulting capabilities to expand in new verticals, and offering new and exciting opportunities to our talents.”

The addition of Sapient will provide Publicis with combined annual revenues of €8bn and combined EBITDA of more than €1.3bn.

The combined companies will employ more than 75,000 people worldwide.

Digital marketing image via Shutterstock

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years