Between the Lines: Why no Paris PR for Marcel?

The news that Publicis is launching a creative hotshop in Paris (page 5) was announced in a rather unusual manner. Very little fuss has been made in France, but the founders, Fred Raillard and Farid Mokart, went on a roadshow around the UK press this week.

The two figureheads of the new agency, Marcel, are creatives of global stature and their names are well respected in the UK. But for an initiative that should surely make waves as big in Paris as in London, wasn't it odd to focus the PR firepower on the UK? Of course, plenty of the blue-chip brands on whose creative briefs the duo have set their sights have their European HQs in London, so a bit of UK-based trumpeting would make sense ... but, then, so too would basing the venture in London.

The Paris venue and the desire for good UK press gives a tangible impression that Marcel is a French riposte to London's creative hotshops. Indeed, the French ad scene has been lacking creative innovation for too long and, if anything, Marcel looks like personal score-settling by the inimitable Maurice Levy.