With about 22% of global ad spending digital and growing, the deal is aimed regaining some of the power back from Silicon Valley giants such as Google (GOOG) and Facebook (FB).
Omnicom (OMC) and Publicis (PGPEF.PK) hope to be able to use their scale to optimize the use of data-driven analysis and the automated trading of ad space.
Deal will need antitrust clearance in around 45 countries, but Omnicom CEO John Wren is confident the companies will receive it.
WPP (WPPGY) CEO Martin Sorrel: "It's an extremely bold, brave and surprising move," he says. "Further consolidation of our industry is inevitable." (previous)
Havas (HAVSF.PK) CEO David Jones: "The deal is "an industrial merger in the digital age," he says. "Clients today want us to be faster, more agile, more nimble and more entrepreneurial — not bigger and more bureaucratic and more complex."