RK Swamy and BBDO have decided to end their 37-year old partnership in India.
According to a memo obtained by Campaign India, the reason for the split was that the RK Swamy Hansa Group wants to bring its various business entities under one roof.
The group has more than 1,000 employees through four entities currently, which include RK Swamy, Hansa Vision India, Hansa Research Group and Hansa Customer Equity.
The memo stated that a friendly agreement was reached between the partners, as both understood and respected each other's strategic imperatives.
According to the agreement, RK Swamy will buy out BBDO’s stake in RK Swamy BBDO and BBDO will buy out RK Swamy's stake in BBDO India.
Shekar Swamy, group CEO, RK Swamy Hansa Group, said, “We started the relationship when Mr R K Swamy and I shook hands with the then CEO of BBDO Allen Rosenshine, in New York in 1985. We worked for four years together on a simple understanding without a formal contract. BBDO invested in us up to a majority, which we then bought back in 2009. They have held a significant minority since then. At that point BBDO India was created and we took a similar minority stake in it. BBDO is a great company and it has been a fantastic journey. The phrase ‘all good things come to an end’ is so true in this case."
Andrew Robertson, CEO, BBDO Worldwide, said, "RK Swamy has been a great partner. We extend to them our very best wishes and cheers as they move forward with plans for their Group. I have always admired their conviction in, and commitment to the future of India and the part they can play in it. I am sure it will be great. We have a strong agency in BBDO India. We remain committed to great work, and this will be the same in India as elsewhere.”
Josy Paul, chairperson and CCO, BBDO India, said, “We are thrilled that we could work this out so amicably. It’s a sign of a wonderful partnership. We’ve had a great run so far at BBDO India, and we're determined to keep that momentum going. For us, it's still very much about breaking up the silos of Advertising, PR, media, digital, tech and activation, and replacing the old model with a new one that's action oriented, that influences behaviour, helps brands build and benefit from communities and creates social movements."
Srinivasan K Swamy, chairperson, RK Swamy Hansa, added, “RK Swamy BBDO is primarily in marketing communications. However our extended activities go beyond marketing communications to span interactive and digital, media planning and buying, media and market research, CRM, data analytics and martech, healthcare communication and continuing medical education, events and outdoor. We are bringing these together under one structure for greater synergy. The future is very exciting as we consolidate."