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Publicis Group Announces Arthur Sadoun Chairman/CEO

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Arthur Sadoun

Publicis Groupe has announced a change in its chairmanship as it names Arthur Sadoun the holding company’s next chairman and CEO, effective June 1.

Sadoun, 44, will take over the role from Maurice Lévy, 74, who has been with the holding company since 1971 and took on the role of chairman and CEO in 1987. Under Lévy’s management Publicis Groupe made a number of big moves in the industry including the $3.7 billion acquisition of SapientNitro and a massive restructuring of the holding company announced in December 2015. He also attempted to engineer a merger with Omnicom Group, but that fell through.

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Sadoun, who currently serves as CEO of Publicis Communications, will take on the new position as of June 1. He will also oversee the management board, which consists of Chief Financial Officer and exec-VP Jean- Michel Etienne; Secretary General Anne-Gabrielle Heilbronner; and new member Steve King, who serves as CEO of Publicis Media.

Sadoun is only the third CEO of Publicis in 90 years. Marcel Bleustein-Blanchet founded the Paris agency in 1926, and was succeeded by Maurice Levy in 1987 after he had already worked with him for 16 years.

Sadoun has long been considered a potential candidate to take over Lévy’s role, but became a clearer choice in recent months following the restructuring of Publicis Groupe in December 2015. At the time, Sadoun was named CEO of Publicis Communications which is comprised of the network’s creative agencies including Saatchi & Saatchi, Leo Burnett and BBH.

Sadoun made a relatively quick rise to the top at Publicis Groupe, kicking off his career there in 2006 as CEO of Publicis Conseil. He was named global CEO of Publicis Worldwide in 2013 and added a leadership position at MSL Group to his responsibilities in 2015.

He was named Ad Age’s Executive of the Year in January 2016, following his performance as CEO of Publicis Worldwide offered some insight into what was ahead at the new Publicis Communications operation he took over.

Source: adage.com & marketingweek.com

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