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Publicis Groupe fuses data and technology assets to form new division Spine

The network will also organise its Digital Business Transformation assets within Publicis.Sapient into industry practice verticals. The network also aligned DigitasLBi to Publicis Media for seamless access to additional scalable data and media resources

Publicis Groupe announced the creation of Publicis Spine, which fuses together all of Publicis Groupe’s data assets, technology and talent, strengthening the company’s unique proposition to drive and link both marketing transformation and digital business transformation.

Spine encompasses three core components. Firstly, it unifies data matching of first, second and third party sources to create unique IDs, which inform when, where and how to engage consumers and with what message. Second is the PeopleCloud, which is a cloud-based platform that uses data to identify sources of client growth at the individual level. This end-to-end platform combines behavioural and semantic intelligence to inform media and creative decision making, activation, and dynamic measurement. Lastly, Spine takes 3,500 engineers, analysts and strategists from across Publicis Groupe into one centralised data and analytics team who will help clients turn data into business insight.

Lisa Donohue

Lisa Donohue will serve as CEO of Publicis Spine. Donohue most recently served as Starcom Global Brand President. She will be succeeded in the Starcom role by John Sheehy, formerly President, Global Clients for Publicis Media. Jason Kodish, currently Global Chief Data Scientist at DigitasLBi, will serve as Chief Data Officer of Publicis Spine and Steve Simpson, who currently runs Publicis Media’s global Analytics and Insight practice will serve as President of PeopleCloud, with both reporting to Donohue. Donohue will report to Arthur Sadoun, Chairman & CEO of Publicis Groupe and Steve King, CEO, Publicis Media and Publicis Groupe Directoire member. Sheehy will report to King.

Second, Publicis Groupe will organise its Digital Business Transformation assets within Publicis.Sapient into industry practice verticals. Nigel Vaz will lead Digital Business Transformation efforts for Publicis Groupe, in addition to continuing in his role as CEO of Publicis.Sapient EMEA and APAC. He will be responsible for overseeing the Digital Business Transformation industry practice leaders and delivery teams to ensure that these transversal capabilities work seamlessly to help clients reinvent both their business and their category.

Third, Publicis Groupe is aligning DigitasLBi within Publicis Media and reporting to King. This alignment gives DigitasLBi a unique agency hybrid of creativity, media, data and technology, seamless access to additional scalable data and media resources. Michael Kahn will serve as Global President of DigitasLBi, a role that he takes on from Nigel Vaz. Kahn, a digital native, spent the early part of his career at e-commerce start-ups, before joining Performics in 2005, ascending to the role of Performics Global Brand President and growing the agency to 57 markets worldwide.

David Gould, previously Chief Delivery Officer of Performics, will take on Performics Global Brand President duties, succeeding Kahn in this role.

“These moves are the natural next steps in the development of our model, further strengthening capability on both the marketing and business transformation fronts and, importantly, closely interconnecting them, fuelled by all of our data expertise,” said Sadoun.

“In today’s world, brand is the experience and experience is the brand,” added King.

“These capabilities will help us unlock that potential for clients, catalysing their reinvention and growth, and creating a better experience for consumers.”


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