Publicis Groupe's MRY Realigned Under SMG

Publicis Groupe has realigned its social media and youth marketing agency, MRY with Starcom MediaVest Group, sources confirmed Wednesday. MRY was previously part of DigitasLBi.

The move provides SMG with added social media and creative capabilities while MRY, whose clients include AT&T and Visa, gets access to SMG’s extensive distribution network. Shared clients include Coca-Cola and Spotify.

MRY will remain a separate entity under the SMG umbrella and will retain its current branding. Sources said the alignment is similar to that of social media shop Big Fuel, a separate unit within SMG that has its own roster of clients.

MRY Matt Britton will continue as CEO of MRY, reporting to SMG Global CEO Laura Desmond.

MRY is the first external creative agency to be placed within SMG. Internally, SMG has two creative units including Liquid Thread, the branded content operation, and experiential unit Zero Dot.



MRY -- formerly Mr. Youth -- became part of Publicis in 2012 with the $540 million LBi acquisition. Subsequently, LBi was aligned with Digitas globally, while MRY absorbed LBi’s North American operation.

The move follows a broad managerial realignment that Publicis Groupe unveiled last week. As part of that move, Desmond was named a member of the holding company’s expanded management board. In addition, she was given oversight of VivaKi for the next year. 

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