Havas Advertising, the French communications giant, has signalled
its intention to develop a global media force with the acquisition of
SFM Media Corporation, the US’s largest independent media buying
SFM has billings of dollars 1 billion, and a client list that includes
Intel, Iomega and Isuzu Motors. The agency now becomes a wholly owned -
but standalone - division of the Havas Advertising group in the US and
its main US media specialist.
The acquisition of SFM is part of efforts by Havas to form an
international alliance with an Anglo-American partner in a bid to become
a top five global agency group by the end of this year.
The development of a strong international media network is vital to this
ambition. Havas already jointly owns Mediapolis with Young & Rubicam,
but Mediapolis has no presence in the US.
At the same time, Y&R is currently re-evaluating its own media
arrangements around the world.
Havas and SFM had a working relationship through Messner Vetere Berger
McNamee Schmetterer/Euro RSCG in New York, with SFM handling national
spot buying for the Euro agency.
Alain de Pouzilhac, the Havas chairman, said the acquisition of SFM,
’would considerably consolidate the role of Havas Advertising among its
major US clients’.