Publicis leaders to set out vision at New York summit

Publicis Communications' global leaders are meeting in New York next week to set out their plans for 2017 -- a landmark year when Maurice Lévy, boss of parent company Publicis Groupe, is due to step down.

Lévy: Publicis Groupe’s chairman and CEO is expected to retire in May 2017
Lévy: Publicis Groupe’s chairman and CEO is expected to retire in May 2017

Arthur Sadoun, chief executive of Publicis Communications, who is widely tipped to succeed Lévy, will lead the event, which will be attended by about 100 senior executives from the group’s creative agencies.

Sadoun said the meeting will become an annual fixture in September.

Lévy, chairman and chief executive of Publicis Groupe since 1987, is expected to retire in May 2017, although he may remain at the group in a non-executive capacity.

On an analyst call in July, Lévy said that his successor would be announced between December 2016 and February 2017 and that only internal candidates were currently being considered.

Other possible candidates include the chief executives of Publicis.Sapient, Alan Herrick, and Publicis Media, Steve King.

The change of leadership has fuelled speculation about the future of Publicis Groupe. Some industry watchers have suggested that the Badinter family could further reduce their stake. However, a spokeswoman for Publicis Groupe has rejected these claims. 

Last year, the Badinters sold more than 2.4 million shares, reducing their ownership from 8.67% to 7.58%.  

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