French electronics giant Thomson hires Publicis for global ad account

The company at the centre of a privatisation row with the new socialist government in France is centralising its global advertising into Publicis.

The consumer electronics company, Thomson Multimedia, a subsidiary of the state-owned defence and electronics group Thomson SA, has hired the French-owned agency after a pitch which also included Ogilvy & Mather, J Walter Thompson, Young & Rubicam and Grey. Thomson Multimedia owns the Ferguson brand in the UK.

Publicis works with the company in European markets, which include France, Italy, Spain and the UK.

Under the new contract it picks up work in new European markets, including Germany and Portugal, as well as the accounts for the US, Asia and the Middle East.

Thomson Multimedia suffered higher losses than expected of FF710m (74m) in the first quarter of 1997, and was caught up in a political row over state subsidies, when it was revealed the government was preparing an FF11bn (1.2bn) recapitalisation ahead of privatisation.

Earlier this year, the company was offered for sale to the Korean company Daewoo for FF1, but the deal was thwarted by an independent privatisation committee.

Latest from Marketing Week

Marketing Week Meets… Mark Ritson

The Marketing Week columnist, consultant and professor explains why marketers need to talk about “making money first”, in a podcast recorded at the Festival of Marketing in October.


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here