Havas has announced the launch of a new global production business, Havas Studios.
The new business has been built in partnership with Australian creative production agency Wellcome Worldwide, and will include staffers from both businesses working side by side in a new corporate entity.
New production studio
Havas Studios plans to build the company out into a ’micro-network’ of 12 content studios based in London, New York, Chicago, and a low-cost offering based out of Kuala Lumpur, as well as further as yet undisclosed locations in Europe, Australia, China, India and the Americas.
Each of the studios will be backed by Wellcom’s proprietary, cloud-based Knowledgewell software suite; Havas said that this will allow teams to collaborate across the globe in real time through “streamlined processes, standards and tools, all under one P&L”.
Yannick Bolloré, chief executive officer of Havas Group, said: “Building better brand experiences means rethinking how content is managed. Now that digital is fully integrated into everything we do, it is content’s turn to become an organic part of our approach. By partnering with Wellcom we are now able to provide our clients with the best production capabilities in the industry. The deal also strengthens our ties with Wellcom’s mother company Innocean, with whom we have a long and fruitful history.”
Further comments came from Chris Hirst, global chief executive of Havas Creative, who said: “We know that it’s no longer enough to just make better ads – all clients, from the smallest to the biggest global brands, now need smarter, more agile, more bespoke and more cost-effective solutions. This new, global micro-network of studios, launching today but very much with the future in mind, doesn’t just allow us to go toe-to-toe with anyone, but offers clients an innovative, technology-first solution they genuinely can’t find anywhere else.”
Led by Havas UK chief operating officer Paul Ward (now global chief executive officer of Havas Studios), the company will be headquartered in London and helmed by a committee of Havas and Wellcom top brass.
Ward said: “The global pandemic threw everything up in the air – and Havas Studios puts the Havas network in a great place as things start to come back down. This launch accelerates the ongoing transformation of our agencies to become businesses that make far more of the work that they previously only managed. Alongside Wellcom, we’ve created a technology first, plug and play content business. We are leapfrogging the competition.”
The partnership agreement will see Wellcom and Havas share revenue generated through the new business.
Wayne Sidwell, global chief executive officer of Wellcom Worldwide, added: “When we first started speaking to Havas about the launch of Havas Studios, we knew that this was an exciting opportunity that we had to take forward. Paul, Chris and I knew that we had a really unique opportunity to pull together Havas’s strategy, creative and production origination with our technology platform and large-scale delivery model ... It’s an incredibly enviable model and I’m very excited to see the business continue to develop over the next few years.”