Plans to create the biggest agency in history have fallen apart, and the ad world is quick to chime in about why the merger failed.
WPP’s Martin Sorrell, who stood to lose from the merger, predictably, dumped all over the breakup news in various interviews. Sorrell said the deal was only driven by emotions and “Gallic charm” and added, “Their eyes were bigger than their tummy.”
Quartz wrote this I-told-you-so piece suggesting the deal was doomed in the first place, noting that canceled deals are up 30 percent. “Notwithstanding the ins and outs of this particular deal in this particular industry, don’t say that we didn’t warn you. The history of mega-deals is not a happy one, as we wrote recently.”
Adland pronounced it the “world’s biggest fail.”
The Deal said the merger was always likely to be tricky.
‘This was not the sort of deal you could push through by committee and consensus’ https://t.co/CbIe9ZetOq $OMC $PUB.PA pic.twitter.com/q9cYSw7cEx
— The Deal (@TheDealNewsroom) May 9, 2014
Twitter, being Twitter, was less nuanced:
“The idea for a merger started as a joke”. Always a good sign. https://t.co/qRe3F4g1bS
— Ben Walsh (@BenDWalsh) May 9, 2014
$35 billion Omnicom-Publicis merger off. The world is safe for ad agencies again. https://t.co/LQ1HdgqPX3 — David Moore (@Elroythecat) May 9, 2014
Did anyone NOT see this coming? #Publicis and #Omnicom Call Off Mega-Merger https://t.co/WIzY3TDyiO — Len Ostroff (@lenostroff) May 9, 2014
Others wondered about the fallout:
“Weddings are stressful, even for ad giants… no word on if gifts will be returned.” –@theskimm on called off Omnicom/Publicis merger
— Junia Geisler (@JuniaGeisler) May 9, 2014
I wonder what the legal fees are like on this? Omnicom, Publicis Abandon $35 Billion Advertising Merger https://t.co/qthpN9pAuh
— Scott Raynovich (@rayno) May 9, 2014
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