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Omnicom-Publicis merger OK’d by EU antitrust body

BRUSSELS — The European Union’s antitrust authority has approved the merger of Omnicom and Publicis, clearing a deal that will create the world’s largest advertising firm.

The European Commission, the 28-nation bloc’s competition watchdog, said Thursday the merger raises no significant antitrust concerns thanks to the presence of other large competitors and the advertising and communication market’s bidding nature.

Omnicom Group Inc., based in New York, and France’s Publicis Groupe SA have said they are combining in a “merger of equals” that will create the Publicis Omnicom Group, a firm worth more than $35 billion.

Omnicom owns BBDO Worldwide, DDB Worldwide Communications Group and TBWA Worldwide, among other agencies. Paris-based Publicis runs its namesake agency as well as Leo Burnett Worldwide, Saatchi & Saatchi and DigitasLBi.



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