OMS denies being in talks with the Omnicom Group

By , agencyfaqs! | In | July 27, 2004
The media agency has issued a communique clarifying its position in the current state of affairs

Optimum Media Solutions has strongly denied any negotiations or being in talks with Optimum Media Direction (OMD) for a possible tie up.

OMD, in theory, is a three-way alliance among global media group Omnicom, TBWA India and RK Swamy/BBDO.

The denial follows recent media reports on the foray of international media groups - Magna Global and Omnicom Group in India. The reports say that Magna is talking to the Interpublic Group media companies - Universal McCann, Initiative Media and Lodestar, while Omnicom is negotiating with TBWA India and RK Swamy/BBDO. There were also reports suggesting Optimum Media Solutions' interest in OMD.

Top officials at Optimum Media Solutions have not only denied any such negotiations, the agency has also issued a communique clarifying its position in the current state of affairs.

The note states, "With reference to the news article headlined 'Omnicom, Magna set for foray in India', filed by leading financials, Optimum Media Solutions (OMS) would like to state that at this current moment, we are not in any discussion with OMD - an Omnicom company. Optimum Media Solutions (OMS) is an independent media services agency, which is a part of the Mudra Group. Any reportage in the media claiming that OMS has joined or is in negotiations on joining Omnicom/OMD, in any proportion of shares, is untrue and uncorroborated."

Apparently, OMS did not agree with the business model proposed by the Omnicom group. And OMS has decided to be an independent agency. In fact, it has already plunged into the market on its own steam. After all, in the last one year OMS has clocked billings of over Rs 125 crore, which by any standards, is no mean achievement, feel company officials.

While OMS is staying out of the negotiation process, the media arms of TBWA India and RK Swamy/BBDO are likely to join forces to form Optimum Media Direction (OMD). Sandip Tarkas, currently CEO of Media Direction will head the newly formed entity.

Now, OMS' denial brings up a lot of unanswered questions. Chief among them is the equity participation of the media agencies of TBWA India and RK Swamy/BBDO in OMD. According to some media reports, the three agencies, including OMS, will each hold 25 per cent in OMD, while the remaining 25 per cent will be with Omnicom.

But since OMS was never in the picture, the issue of the stake holding arrangement too becomes unclear.

While top officials related to development desisted from shedding any light on the confusing matter, they nonetheless issued a word of caution. Since the formation of the new entity is still months away, reading too much between the lines may be misleading after all, is what - in a nutshell - they said.

Therefore, questions on the stake-holding structure, the role of the media agencies that will finally converge to form OMD, and the business model would all have wait for an unequivocal response. © 2004 agencyfaqs!

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