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Publicis Groupe Acquires Match Media in Australia

PARIS, June 3, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Publicis Groupe [Euronext Paris: FR0000130577, CAC40] announced today the acquisition of Match Media, Australia's leading independent media agency. Match Media will be part of ZenithOptimedia Group's newly launched global media network, Blue 449.

As part of the Blue 449 network, Match Media will benefit from the extensive range of "open source" services offered within Publicis Groupe in order to better equip its clients with the latest technologies, accompanying them through their fast-paced business transformation fuelled by digital, technology, innovation, and consumer empowerment today.

Match Media was founded in 2003 by John Preston, CEO. The agency, headquartered in Sydney, has more than 75 employees and specialises in media strategy and buying, digital planning and buying, search, social and analytics. Over the last twelve years, Match Media has focused on helping clients grow by creating work that works, and as a result has won local and global awards, including multiple Media Agency of the Year titles. Most recently Match Media was globally recognized by the Warc 100 as the 19th best media agency in the world, the only independent to be ranked in the top 20.

Match Media will retain its management team under the leadership of John Preston as CEO and James Simmons as COO. They will in turn report directly to Gerry Boyle, Global Managing Partner/APAC Chairman, ZenithOptimedia Asia Pacific.

Match Media in Australia will be the vanguard to expansion of the Blue 449 network across Asia-Pacific. The network launched in February with the rebranding of Walker Media in London to Blue 449. There are now four Blue 449 hubs - Australia, France, Italy and UK - and a further 13 are planned for launch by the end of the year.

Gerry Boyle said, "Blue 449 is a new global network comprised of like-minded entrepreneurs who are embracing technology and data as a means to delivering growth for clients. As a progressive digitally focused agency, Match Media is the perfect fit and we are pleased to announce their addition to the Blue 449 network."

John Preston added, "Match has enjoyed a wonderful run in its twelve year history as an independent. Now, the rapidly changing world of data and technology has motivated us to explore potential partners that will allow us to provide our clients access to the latest technology and a suite of world class platforms and tools. The challenge was finding a partner who could supercharge our existing offering but also had a kindred spirit. Publicis Groupe and its network ZenithOptimedia really impressed us with their digitally progressive vision and their focus on harnessing the independent entrepreneurial spirit that is in our DNA. I am really looking forward to the next evolution of Match as part of the Blue 449 network."

James Simmons said, "This is the natural next big step in the story of Match. We have been on a continual journey of improvement and have built what we believe to be an excellent foundation. The time is right to leverage the assets that Blue 449 can bring to our clients, people and business to grow and create another chapter of pushing the boundaries in the media agency landscape."

Publicis Groupe currently counts over 1,300 employees in Australia throughout its networks Publicis Worldwide, Saatchi & Saatchi, Leo Burnett Worldwide, PHCG, Starcom MediaVest Group, ZenithOptimedia, Razorfish, DigitasLBi and Sapient. According to ZenithOptimedia's latest forecast, digital media continues to be the main driver of ad revenue growth, video and mobile display in particular, in the Australian market. Overall in 2014, digital spend grew by 13%.
About Publicis Groupe
Publicis Groupe [Euronext Paris FR0000130577, CAC 40] is a global leader in marketing, communication, and business transformation. In a world marked by increased convergence and consumer empowerment, Publicis Groupe offers a full range of services and skills: digital, technology & consulting with Publicis.Sapient (SapientNitro, Sapient Global Markets, Sapient Government Services, Razorfish Global, DigitasLBi, Rosetta) - the world's largest most forward-thinking digitally centered platform focused exclusively on digital transformation in an always-on world - as well as creative networks such as BBH, Leo Burnett, Publicis Worldwide, Saatchi & Saatchi, public affairs, corporate communications and events with MSLGROUP, ad tech solutions with VivaKi, media strategy, planning and buying through Starcom MediaVest Group and ZenithOptimedia, healthcare communications, with Publicis Healthcare Communications Group (PHCG), and finally, brand asset production with Prodigious. Present in 108 countries, the Groupe employs more than 76,000 professionals.
www.publicisgroupe.com | Twitter: @PublicisGroupe | Facebook: www.facebook.com/publicisgroupe | LinkedIn: Publicis Groupe | http://www.youtube.com/user/PublicisGroupe | Viva la Difference !

About ZenithOptimedia
ZenithOptimedia - www.zenithoptimedia.com - is a leading global media services network with over 7,500 people working in 262 offices across 74 countries. We are part of Publicis Groupe [Euronext Paris FR0000130577, CAC 40], the world's third largest communications group, and the world's second largest media counsel and buying group. As the first agency to apply a rigorous and objective approach to improving the effectiveness of marketing spend, ZenithOptimedia delivers to clients the best possible return on their communications investment. This philosophy is supported by a unique approach to strategy development and implementation across the full spectrum of paid, owned and earned contact points - the Live ROI planning process. The ZenithOptimedia Group of companies equips our clients with a full range of integrated skills across communications planning, value optimisation, performance media and content creation.

About Blue 449
Blue 449 - www.blue449.com - is a new global media network within the ZenithOptimedia Group. Organised in 4 regional hubs, (EMEA, North America, Asia-Pacific, LATAM ) with its headquarters in London, Blue 449 will operate across in 17 city hubs around the world by the end of 2015. Driven by an "Open Source" approach, Blue 449 will take charge of its customer's business objectives and enable them access to the extensive range of services within the ZenithOptimedia Group and the Publicis Groupe, making use of external partners to the group, selected for their best results and the best possible value for its customers.

About Match Media
Match Media is Australia's leading independent media agency with billings in excess of $170million and a staff of 75. Match is a multi-award winning agency, globally recognised by the Warc 100 as the 19th best media agency in the world, the only independent to be ranked. Match is also ranked 17th in the Best Places to Work Survey Asia for small to mid-sized companies. Founded in 2003 Match specialises in media strategy and buying, digital planning and buying, search, social and analytics and are experts in unjumbling today's complex media landscape. Match Mission is to simply help clients grow by creating work that works. Further information on Match Media can be found at www.matchmedia.com.au
Contacts

Publicis Groupe
Peggy Nahmany Corporate Communications + 33 (0)1 44 43 72 83 peggy.nahmany@publicisgroupe.com
Jean-Michel Bonamy Investor Relations + 33 (0)1 44 43 77 88 jean-michel.bonamy@publicisgroupe.com
Stéphanie Constand Investor Relations + 33 (0)1 44 43 74 44 stephanie.constand@publicisgroupe.com


ZenithOptimedia
Polly Williams Network Communications Director, Asia Pacific +65 8691 6180 polly.williams@zenithoptimedia.com.sg
Joy Clark (Australia) Joy Clark & Associates, Public Relations +61 415 266 228

joyclark@ozemail.com.au

HUG#1925889

Source:Publicis Groupe