Publicis And Epsilon: An Acquisition Of Legacies?

Big news: Publicis is buying Epsilon for $4.4B to bolster its first-party data (audience targeting) capabilities. This is the largest acquisition ever for Publicis since being founded in 1926.

Why this matters: The future of advertising is audience targeted and holding companies such as Publicis are playing catch up through acquisitions.

Recent purchases of data firms by holding companies:
1)
Merkle → Dentsu (2016 — $1.5B)
2) Acxiom Marketing Solutions → IPG (2018 — $2.3B)
3) Epsilon → Publicis (2019 — $4.4B)

What others are saying: Maja Milicevic @ Sparrow Advisers argues that little is unique from this acquisition because the brands own their first-party data as opposed to Epsilon.

Quote from Jay Stocki — COO @ Signal:
“They had to do this. They were the last big holding company that didn’t have a strong data play.”

Key details for Epsilon:
1)
$2.2B revenue in 2018
2) 8K employees
3) 70 offices
4) 71B
personalized emails sent in 2018
5) 250M U.S. adults in database
6) 7K different attributes

More #1: The Rundown: Agencies get their hands dirty with data ownership

More #2: What First-Party Data Does Epsilon Actually Have?

More #3: Q&A: Publicis Groupe CEO Arthur Sadoun on Epsilon acquisition

Leave a Reply