Publicis Groupe and Microsoft jointly announced Publicis Groupe will acquire digital marketing agency Razorfish in a transaction valued at $530 million. In addition, they’ve signed a Strategic Alliance Agreement that will become effective at the closing of the deal. Razorfish’s management team, led by CEO Bob Lord, will remain unchanged. The total consideration is expected to be paid in a combination of cash and delivery of 6.5 million Publicis Groupe treasury shares. The transaction is expected to close during Q4.
Razorfish will continue to operate under its brand name and be organizationally part of VivaKi, the new Publicis Groupe entity created in June 2008 to leverage the combined scale of the autonomous operations of Digitas, Starcom MediaVest Group, Denuo, and ZenithOptimedia. Major clients of Razorfish include Best Buy, Ford, McDonald’s, Microsoft, and Starwood Hotels.
“The acquisition of Razorfish is another step forward in realizing our strategic vision of building a world leader in digital communications, a critically important space for our clients,” said Maurice Levy, Chairman and CEO of Publicis Groupe. “More than anything, this acquisition should demonstrate that Publicis Groupe now presents a wider pool of resources, talent, and expertise that will help our clients market their products or services in a way that takes maximum advantage of the new digital world. Our capabilities will be further enhanced by the great talent throughout Razorfish, and we are happy to welcome this new addition to our family.”