Publicis, Omnicom say major clients welcome merger
PARIS (Reuters) - The chief executives of Publicis and Omnicom said they had spoken to major clients about their planned merger and did not anticipate major problems with big advertisers defecting to rivals in the transition period.
Publicis CEO Maurice Levy said the reaction to the merger from all the company's major clients had been "extremely positive".
Competing sector executives and analysts expect that the Publicis Omnicom merger could spur some big customers to switch agencies to avoid conflicts.
Holding companies such as Omnicom and Publicis own networks of agencies and PR firms within the larger group. They're designed to work independently so that competing clients - Pepsi and Coca-Cola for example - are placed in separate networks to avoid conflict.
"We're going to work extremely hard to resolve any client conflict issues with creative solutions," said John Wren, the Omnicom CEO.
WASHINGTON - The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits increased more than expected last week, but the rise probably does not suggest a shift in labor market conditions as the underlying trend continued to point to strength.
BEIJING/HONG KONG - China reiterated its opposition on Thursday to a European Union plan to limit airline carbon dioxide emissions and called for talks to resolve the issue a day after its major airlines refused to pay any carbon costs under the new law.