In 2008, the Interpublic Group (IPG) had brought together all its global media-related assets – Initiative, Universal McCann, Magna – under the brand name Mediabrands. In India, this umbrella brand comprises Lintas Media Group and Lodestar Universal. Internationally, Reprise Media, which is a search and social marketing specialist, too, was added to the Mediabrands umbrella in January 2009.
Now, IPG is all set to bring this digital brand to India in partnership with local player Interactive Avenues. In India, IPG’s Lodestar Universal and Interactive Avenues have been working on various projects for a few months now, but it is understood that the two are now in the process of forming a 50-50 joint venture.
No official from IPG, Lodestar Universal or Interactive Avenue could be contacted at the time of filing the report, however, sources close to the development informed that joint venture talks were at and advanced stage and that the venture was expected to be in place in a month or two.
The name of the venture is yet to be finalised, but it is understood that it would reflect both the Reprise and the Interactive Avenue brand names. The Interactive Avenues brand name would continue to exist independently as well. Sources also divulged that Anjali Hegde, another partner and Vice-President of Interactive Avenues, would be working on the Reprise-Interactive Avenues JV.
IPG had acquired Reprise Media is April 2007. Interactive Avenues created a place for itself since its inception in April 2006 under the leadership of Ratish Nair and other partners, and is one of the key digital players in India.