The World: Dubai - Havas announces joint venture in the Middle East

Havas is extending its presence in the Middle East via a new joint venture with the Dubai-based Chalhoub Group in which it previously had a minority share. Havas previously operated in the region through affliates and minority stakes.

It comes at a time of significant growth in advertising across the Middle East. Media spending in markets such as Saudi Arabia is outpacing that of China.

The venture will handle Havas' clients such as Peugeot, Reckitt Benckiser, Danone and Air France, as well Chalhoub's luxury and fashion brands.

Fernando Rodes, the Havas chief executive, said: "The Chalhoub Group is the perfect partner to take on this complex but promising region."