Hopscotch and Le Public Systeme merge to create French agency heavyweight

Publicly-listed French comms agency Le Public Systeme is merging with the country's biggest independent firm, Hopscotch.

Lascombe: becomes MD of new agency
Lascombe: becomes MD of new agency

The deal will create Public Systeme Hopscotch, a listed agency boasting combined revenues of 150 million Euros and 515 staffers.

Hopscotch CEO Jerome Lascombe, who owned the majority of shares in Hopscotch, becomes one of the main shareholders and MD of the new entity.

He joins Le Public Systeme board directors Frederic Bedin, Benoit Desveaux and Pierre-Franck Moley on the board of the new group.

Lascombe told PRWeek Global that the deal would bring scale to Hopscotch's attempts to forge a genuine international presence.

‘We want to accelerate our international growth,' said Lascombe. ‘Whe you have 500 people in France it is easier to mobilise people to grow beyond your country.'

Hopscotch already counts an office in Dublin, called Hopscotch Europe In One. Lascombe said that Asia and Latin America are priorities for further expansion, whether by acquisition or start-ups.

Lascombe also pointed out that access to public funds would also spur growth. ‘We wanted to provide liquidity to our financial shareholders.' The agency becomes the second notable independent in recent months to seek public funds, following the listing of Chinese firm BlueFocus in February of this year.

Hopscotch reported revenues of 15.3 million Euros in 2009, with 40 per cent coming from digital servces. Le Public Systeme, meanwile, is noted for its strengths in event marketing, lifestyle and culture.

The two agencies possess a shared client relationship in Microsoft.

 

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