Omnicom-Publicis deal closing pushed back to H1

BARCELONA Thu Nov 21, 2013 1:00pm EST

BARCELONA Nov 21 (Reuters) - The $35.1 billion tie up of advertising groups Omnicom and Publicis will close, at the latest, by the first half of next year, the two groups said on Thursday, pushing the date slightly further back than expected.

Omnicom's Chief Executive John Wren and Publicis boss Maurice Levy said they were still waiting on some regulatory approvals including Russia and the European Union, meaning they may just miss the original target of a first quarter close. Approval in the United States has been secured.

"We'll close certainly in the first half and as early as we can," Wren told the Morgan Stanley investor conference in Barcelona.