Omnicom anticipates boost from AMV deal

US communications group Omnicom is poised to boost its annual PR fee income by over pounds 10 million to pounds 300 million if it succeeds in its plan to take control of UK advertising group Abbott Mead Vickers (AMV).

US communications group Omnicom is poised to boost its annual PR

fee income by over pounds 10 million to pounds 300 million if it

succeeds in its plan to take control of UK advertising group Abbott Mead

Vickers (AMV).



The pounds 350 million deal would include UK PR agencies Fishburn

Hedges, Freud Communications, Aurelia Public Relations, Frew Macmaster

and Hammond Communications, all part of AMV.



Last week, AMV told the London stock exchange that it was in

’preliminary discussions with Omnicom Group which may or may not lead to

a share exchange offer by Omnicom’. A further announcement is expected

’in due course’, it said.



Omnicom already has a 27.7 per cent shareholding in AMV, but wants to

acquire the remaining shares.



Omnicom is already the largest owner of PR agencies in the world. In its

stable are Fleishman-Hillard, Porter Novelli International, Ketchum

Group, Gavin Anderson, Brodeur Worldwide, Copithorne and Bellows and

lobbying firm GPC.



Porter Novelli and Fleishman-Hillard, which was acquired by Omnicom last

year, are grouped under an umbrella division, communications consulting

worldwide, whose chairman and chief executive is John Graham. Graham is

also the worldwide head of Fleishman-Hillard. It is not clear whether

AMV’s PR agencies would come under his control.



The move would take the group’s combined annual fee income to at least

pounds 300 million, according to PR Week’s Top 150 and Jack O’Dwyer’s

league tables.



Young and Rubicam, which owns Burson-Marsteller and Cohn and Wolfe, had

annual fees of around pounds 184 million last year. Interpublic, which

owns Shandwick and its sister agency Golin/Harris and Weber Public

Relations Worldwide, had fees of an estimated pounds 190 million.



Senior executives on both sides were unable to comment on the move due

to UK company takeover and merger rules.



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