January 2008

Transaction Background

At the time of the transaction, Arena was Havas Media’s fastest growing tailor-made communications network, operating in 8 markets following the acquisition of BLM.

BLM was the UK’s leading independent media agency, managing billings of £123 million.

The enlarged operation, together with Media Contacts, gives a collective digital capacity that makes it the country’s second largest digital media group.

The combined business, renamed Arena BLM, almost doubled Havas’ media presence in the UK, which reflected its strategy of consolidating growth in core mature markets and building on the success of its UK brands.

Our Role

Clarity identified BLM as the optimal acquisition target and advised Arena on the timing and method of approach.

Throughout the process Clarity managed a highly distributed team, with key people from Havas being located across France, Spain, the UK and Latin America.

Clarity produced the investment appraisal for presentation to the executive committee of Havas.

Clarity negotiated the deal structure that achieved the desired balance of incentivising maintenance of existing clients, new business growth and profitability, and managed all aspects of the deal process.

“Clarity played a key role in initiating this transaction and bringing it to a successful conclusion. Crucially, their negotiation skills enabled us to create a properly incentivising structure and maintain a spirit of partnership with our UK management team going forwards.”

Joaquín Bohorquez
Global CEO, Arena Media Communications