- Executives from five top European agencies, including WCRS, will gather in Paris next week to thrash out details of the planned revamp of Havas Advertising's second-string network.
High on the agenda will be a discussion of possible take-over targets drawn up for US, South America and Asia, as well as free-ranging talks on the new network's name and its corporate vision.
Havas, which already owns Euro RSCG, has been seeking to add a realistic second string to its bow for some years. Its chief executive, Alain de Pouzhillac, assigned responsibility for making this happen to the French advertising veteran, Jean-Pierre Audour, late last year.
Audour confirmed this week that "in depth" discussions were in progress with a number of US agencies, but declined to give their names. He also denied trade press reports that he had enlisted the help of US adman Marvin Sloves in his search.
"We have no agreement with Marvin. It is true that he is a good friend of mine, and someone may have seen us together at a restaurant last week. Maybe I asked his advice, but we have no agreement with him," Audour said.
He added that an announcement was expected by 10 June about the new network, which will be built around Havas' loose agency grouping called Campus. This would include news of a likely Brazilian acquisition, with announcements about the US to follow later.
The aim is to relaunch the Campus network this September. The existing partners include the German agency, Rempen & Partners, Devarrieux Villaret in Paris and Milan's Ata-Tonic, as well as WCRS in the UK.