France: Publicis to buy Epsilon for US$4.4B

Publicis is set to buy data-driven marketing agency Epsilon in the French ad giant’s biggest acquisition to date.

The deal with Alliance Data Systems Corporation will entail Publicis acquiring its Epsilon business for a net purchase price of US$3.95 billion after a tax step-up, with a total cash consideration of US$4.4 billion. Publicis will form a strategic partnership with Alliance Data’s remaining business.

The deal comes as the advertising industry reckons with the huge growth of digital advertising and the emergence of players like Facebook and Google. Digital ad spending was expected to surpass traditional ad spending in the US for the first time this year, according to eMarketer, which also expects digital to account for more than two-thirds of all media spending by 2023.

The acquisition gives Publicis access to Epsilon’s data capabilities. The company reports, for example, it has more than 250 million unique consumers identified in the US. The company states says it can build on top of a client’s first-party data with its own assets, like behavioral and transactional data.

Full Content: CNBC

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