Media giants set to merge

Two of the UK’s biggest media agencies, Optimedia and Zenith, look set to merge after Publicis’ £1.3bn takeover of Saatchi & Saatchi.

The Publicis deal includes Saatchi’s 50 per cent stake in Zenith, which is jointly owned with Cordiant. Cordiant is expected to begin talks with the new group over the sale of its share.

A Cordiant spokesman says: “A merger will not happen just yet, but it will happen in the long term.”

One industry insider says: “A merger will not happen instantly, but it will be good for both parties.”

Optimedia is thought by some analysts to be in need of a boost in the UK, while Zenith is relatively weak outside its UK heartland.

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