Here’s what we can expect from dentsu’s global realignment plan for India

As dentsu international announces a restructuring plan, Anand Bhadkamkar, CEO, India, dentsu, shares how this will impact the Indian market

e4m by Noel Dsouza
Updated: Dec 24, 2020 9:00 AM
dentsu international

Given the situation of the pandemic environment and for dentsu International, a conglomerate that has many brands, a one-stop approach was the need of the hour. The global arm of dentsu, earlier this month, announced that it would be going in for a major restructuring process. The company is looking at fully integrating its brand portfolio, from over 160 brands to six global leadership brands by 2022. The clients need a simple one-stop solution and dentsu aims to allow their clients to attain a very clear One P&L approach. Instead of having silos, there will be a simple solution for brands. This process is going to be based on a brand rationalization strategy globally where they will be bringing down the number of brands. dentsu International will focus on three potent service areas from now on which are media, creative and CXL. In the Indian business environment, they will be coming down from approximately 20 plus brands to 7 brands. The latest update in alignment with the consolidation process saw Dentsu International merging The Story Lab with C’Lab.

e4m spoke to Anand Bhadkamkar, CEO, India, dentsu to understand how the revamping of organisations to make it a one-stop solution for clients is going to look like in India and the changes that will occur going forward.

Edited Excerpts below

The changes and downsizing plan
Dentsu Aegis Network, as reported globally, has become dentsu international. As part of that overall journey, we are re-organising and consolidating our brands. Globally we have around 160 brands and action plans to get it down to 6 global brands i.e Dentsumcgarrybowen, Isobar, Carat, dentsu X, iProspect and Merkle. That is the journey that we will be taking but it will be completed by the end of the year 2022. This is our global mission and where the plan of direction is. In India, we have more than 20 brands as part of our acquisitions and as part of our growth journey over the last 12-13 years. Even the journey in India would be similar. We would be looking at consolidating into 7 brands in India, including 6 global brands, and additionally, we have a very strong OOH offering, which will be consolidated in Posterscope. The journey is going to be a stepped-up journey and we’ll start consolidating. By 2022 is when we are looking at completing it. The focus is on ensuring the consolidation of our capabilities for fulfilling the client’s business needs and providing business solutions for our clients. From an India perspective, our strength has been our digital capabilities. So, that is where the focus would remain on strengthening digital offerings as we move forward as well. We have always worked as One Dan in India and this consolidation will further strengthen the offerings to clients and provide access to One dentsu globally and not only within the market. The business is getting geared towards this and organised in 3 service lines which are creative, media, and CXM (Customer Experience Management). The brands would work across these 3 service lines.

Plan for dentsu’s OOH companies: Posterscope India and Milestone Brandcom
Recently, both of the OOH companies have started working together as well. Nabendu Bhattacharyya is exiting Milestone by end of this year, pursuing his personal interest. The leadership teams at both Milestone and Posterscope are working closely together, providing solutions to clients, and going forward will be working under the guidance of Haresh Nayak. Both agencies have their own set of clients and are complementary to each other and will be working cohesively and progressively on this journey.

In this mission of re-organizing what key trends are you looking at developing in 2021?
In 2021, the focus is definitely going to be on high growth areas. As I said, our focus is on further strengthening our digital capabilities. We will keep on investing in those fast-growing areas of business and reorient our focus from the areas which are performing. Depending on how the COVID pandemic pans out, 2021 as well is going to be viewed cautiously from a global perspective.

Dentsu is an ideas-led, tech-enabled, and data-driven network, and our focus will be on strengthening those capabilities for solving clients' business problems. Ideas will remain at the core of our solutions be it media, creative, data, or a tech-enabled solution for clients. Definitely, our focus will be on data, AdTech and MarTech solutions, content delivering personalised experiences to consumers, and e-commerce capabilities. We are partnering with our clients on their digital journeys and supporting them on the digital transformation including e-commerce solutions, and also with our partnerships with tech partners. We will keep on investing more in these faster-growing areas and re-purpose from other areas of the business as per the requirements.

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