The partnership agreement will see the creation of 12 integrated digital production studios across 10 markets by 2022.
Havas, one of the world’s largest advertising and communications groups, has partnered with global creative production agency Wellcom Worldwide to launch Havas Studios: a new, integrated global production business spanning the full range of content production capabilities.
The partnership agreement, which will see employees from both businesses transferred into the new entity and revenue shared between the two, will be headquartered in London and led by Havas UK Chief Operating Officer Paul Ward, who takes on the new title of Global CEO, Havas Studios. He will be supported by an executive committee comprising both Havas and Wellcom senior executives.
It will see the creation of a micro-network of integrated content studios, first in London, New York, Chicago and Kuala Lumpur, followed by further studios across Europe, Australia, China, India, Latin America and the West Coast of the US.
Built as a creative boutique, technology-first business, the new production model will bring together existing and newly built studios, backed up by a low-cost offering based in Kuala Lumpur – affording each worldwide location the ability to create quality content at scale. Wellcom’s proprietary, cloud-based Knowledgewell suite – comprising marketing resource management, campaign management, digital asset management and overall studio workflow – will sit at the heart of every studio, allowing teams to collaborate across the globe in real time through streamlined processes, standards and tools, all under one P&L.
With specialist content studios based within key Havas Village locations around the world, Havas Studios’ capabilities will span film, audio, print, photographic and digital content production, encompassing content origination talent and a wide range of post-production facilities, as well as dedicated teams supporting the integrated delivery of retail and eCommerce platform-ready content.
Yannick Bolloré, CEO Havas Group, comments: “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.”
Chris Hirst, global CEO Havas Creative, says: “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.”
Paul Ward, Global CEO Havas Studios, adds: “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 which 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.”
Wayne Sidwell, Global CEO at Wellcom Worldwide adds: “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’ 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.”