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Dentsu Aegis Network claims to have become No. 2 agency group in India

With this, Dentsu Aegis Network has now overturned for the first time the existing rankings which have historically been in place for over 80 years in this country

BestMediaInfo Bureau | Mumbai | February 15, 2017


In a media statement today, Dentsu Aegis Network (DAN) has claimed to have become the No. 2 agency group in India. With this, Dentsu Aegis Network has now overturned for the first time the existing rankings which have historically been in place for over 80 years in this country.

Despite being a late entrant in the Indian advertising space, Dentsu Aegis Network today is the fastest growing agency network for three years in a row. The group has steadfastly helmed some of the industry’s most successful acquisitions in recent years including that of Milestone Brandcom, Dentsu Webchutney, Taproot Dentsu, iProspect (Communicate2), WATConsult, Fountainhead MKTG, Perfect Relations, Happy Mcgarrybowen and Fractal Ink.

This has, in turn, not only helped it aggressively scale up its operations organically and inorganically but also expand itself to a 3,000+ people network. It is pertinent to note here that the latest Fractal acquisition has now brought together a team of over 1,000 digital experts inside DAN, the largest in India, including the combined Isobar team and the existing network digital brands iProspect, WATConsult and Dentsu Webchutney.

Meanwhile, with Posterscope and Milestone Brandcom under its umbrella, Dentsu Aegis Network is not just the leader but a dominant player in the OOH space in India. It is also home to the most sought-after creative agencies of the country, the biggest social media agency in India and has the most comprehensive marketing communication offerings under its unique ‘One P&L’ philosophy.

In the past year, Dentsu Aegis Network India took a huge leap with dramatic improvement in scale, making India a key contributor towards Denstu Aegis Network’s global revenue growth. While the business in India grew 300 per cent, the network went on to win some of the largest accounts in India, include Mondelez, Maruti (digital and creative), Carlsberg, Nokia, Microsoft, General Motors, British Airways, Allied Blenders, MasterCard, Sony, Hindustan Times, Panasonic and several other key accounts in the last two years. The Digital business grew by 250 per cent (industry average 30 per cent) and OOH advertising by over 150 per cent (industry average 6.1 per cent). The network’s turnover growth stands at a 102 per cent (industry average 11 per cent) while its revenue growth is over 100 per cent.

Ashish Bhasin Ashish Bhasin

Ashish Bhasin, Chairman and CEO, Dentsu Aegis Network South Asia, said, “We are delighted to have overturned 80 years of history. I stuck my neck out and publicly announced our ambition and my superb team worked hard and smart to deliver what then looked like an impossible target, well ahead of time. We will use the rest of 2017 to further consolidate our position because from here onwards the top slots of this industry are likely to be more and more a two-horse race. I am also grateful to all Dentsu Aegis Network clients for entrusting their brands to us. We have changed the paradigm in our industry and will continue to strive to ensure that we keep raising the bar to global standards as we march towards a Digital India.”

When contacted by Best Media Info, Bhasin said, "There are four parameters to judge growth of any agency group – number of people, billings, revenue and profit. While all four figures can't be shared publically, but we are ahead on all four parameters, in some cases by a small margin."

About the basis of the ranking claim, Bhasin clarified, "We have about Rs 4,500 crore billings in 2016-17 and we have about 3,000 people, which is both much above than the now No. 3 group. I am not talking about RECMA numbers or other things. We have large digital, OOH, events, PR and creative agencies too, so we can't only focus on the media agencies. Hence RECMA ratings which only cover traditional media aren’t really relevant to us."

"In terms of profit too, we are about 20 per cent ahead of the No. 3 player. About 30 per cent of this growth has come from inorganic growth, but ideally I would want this to be a 50:50 ratio," he added.

He concluded optimistically, "Once in this position, ahead of the deadline of December 2017, I would now focus on consolidating this position. The earlier No. 2 player had stayed at this mark for 80 years and I would like to enjoy the same till we move further up the ladder. They must have done something right in those days."


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