Dentsu Won't Buy Interpublic or Havas

Count Dentsu out as an acquirer of the Interpublic Group or Havas Group, at least for the foreseeable future.

Speaking at a Goldman Sachs investor conference in New York Thursday, Tim Andree, EVP at Japan-based Dentsu, said the holding company was not interested in purchasing either holding at this time.

Dentsu acquired Aegis group in 2013 for about $5 billion, which is the largest acquisition made by the company to date.

IPG has been the subject of takeover rumors for years — speculation that intensified earlier this year when the proposed merger of Publicis Groupe and Omnicom collapsed.

A short time later, activist investor Elliott Management bought up 6.7% of IPG stock and has since indicated that it considers a sale of IPG to be a viable option. Analysts have also identified Publicis Groupe, in the wake of its failed merger with Omnicom to be a potential acquirer of IPG.



Speaking at the same conference, IPG CEO Michael Roth commented that “it’s a small universe. This is not a new thing,” referring to rumors about the company being in play. He also said the company has -- and would consider -- offers that would boost shareholder value.

Both Andree and Roth said their respective companies would continue to make smaller acquisitions. Roth indicated that the company was on track to spend between $150 million to $200 million on smaller acquisitions this year.

Earlier this year, IPG, through its Lowe and Partners agency, acquired digital shop Profero. That deal came shortly after another IPG shop, FCB, purchased Inferno. 

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