Publicis Groupe and Walmart have entered a strategic relationship that will give the retail group “unfettered access” to all of Publicis’ agencies and resources.
The relationship, which is not exclusive, will become effective on 1 July and will initially apply to Walmart’s US advertising and in-store creative for which Publicis Groupe will function as its primary agency of record.
Publicis Groupe and Walmart have struck up the strategic relationship shortly after Walmart-owned Asda appointed Publicis-owned Saatchi & Saatchi as its lead ad agency.
The move followed on from Walmart taking more control of the UK supermarket after a sustained dip in sales.
Asda’s new chief customer officer Andy Murray was the founder of shopper marketing agency Saatchi & Saatchi X, which has worked with Walmart since 1996.
Before taking on the Asda role Murray was senior vice-president of creative and customer experience at Walmart and aligned the retailer’s marketing with Saatchi & Saatchi with high profile campaigns around events such as the Winter Olympics.
Walmart president and chief executive Doug McMillon said: “Our ambition globally is to make every day easier for busy families, and having best-in-class marketing is critical to achieving that goal.
“This relationship with Publicis Groupe will help us think and act differently, which will ultimately enable us to serve our customers even better.”
Publicis Groupe will pool resources from across its agencies to ensure the right talent is working on each Walmart project and the relationship will be led by Publics Communications chief executive Arthur Sadoun.
Maurice Levy, Publics Groupe chairman and chief executive, said: “This relationship is the direct result of Publicis’ new approach, ‘the Power of One,’ which is designed to deliver end-to end solutions for our clients.
“Walmart is already implementing innovative approaches to reach its customers. Our goal is to leverage all of Publicis’ assets – not just the resources of one agency – to help them in these efforts.”