#SocialThrowback2020: Mergers and Acquisitions that marked the year 2020

Aishwarrya Chakraverty
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Mergers and Acquisitions in 2020

As the year of challenges, resilience, and collaborations, traverses through the last month, Social Samosa takes you through some of the prominent Mergers and Acquisitions in 2020 that paved the way for larger conglomerates and powerhouses.

Irrespective of any industry, Mergers, and Acquisitions have usually always paved the path for expansion and growth. But the year 2020 has been different. At a time, when organizations were reducing expenditures, consumers being prudent at spending, and the fluctuating attrition rate, the mergers, and acquisitions witnessed a slow process in the A & M Industry with the advent of COVID-19.

While some major consolidations took place in the pre-COVID-19 era, the processes seemed to recover in the second half of the year with some consolidations occurring in the new normal.

Some of the noteworthy trends in the category, included- enhancing data-based capabilities amongst the agencies in the advertising industry and becoming technological and creative powerhouses, while others focus on increasing their network offerings. For example, Dentsu Aegis acquiring Digital Pi in January 2020, Wunderman Thompson acquiring marketing technology consultancy XumaK in February 2020, and Nihilent strengthing itself with Hypercollective in March 2020.

The second half and the end of the year showed significant promise in the category when creative and data-backed agencies came together to become singular entities such as the recent coming together of VMLY&R and The Glitch.

Further, with the ongoing pandemic, while the year presented itself with innumerable challenges, a lot of agencies leveraged Mergers and Acquisitions for growth across varied cities and states. Apart from the 'Big four', the year also witnessed some micro and macro-level consolidations. For example: Evolve Digitas spread its arms in Gurugram with the announcement of the acquisition of Thinking Folks in the city.

The month of December 2020 also saw martech companies consolidating with fast-growing creative agencies like the recent acquisition of What’s Your Problem with Wondrlab. We also noticed some global acquisitions in the last few months of the year with WPP combining AKQA and Grey to form AKQA Group, Geometry fusing with VMLY&R to form VMLY&R Commerce, amongst others.

Also read: #SocialThrowback2020: How affiliate marketing emerged as a key driver towards the success of D2C brands

Touted to be the year of changes, overcoming challenges, innovation, data, and technology, the Mergers and Acquisitions in the A & M Industry continue to be an essential trend to drive business and commerce, especially when there is a marriage of right fit between the companies in 2020.

Social Samosa takes a look at the Mergers & Acquisitions in the year that is passing by, to go beyond and possibly reshape the media & advertising industry into the stronghold it is today.

January 2020: Dentsu Aegis announces the acquisition of Digital Pi

January 2020: Dentsu Aegis Network acquires 4Cite Marketing within Merkle

February 2020: Digital Vidya acquires Delhi School of Internet Marketing (DSIM)

February 2020: Cognizant acquires Code Zero Consulting

February 2020: Wunderman Thompson acquires marketing technology consultancy XumaK

February 2020: Twitter acquires Chroma Labs

March 2020: Group M acquires Sandtable, the data science company

March 2020: Nihilent acquires Hypercollective

March 2020: Japanese advertising agency, Hakuhodo acquires AdGlobal360

March 2020: Affle to acquire Europe based programmatic and proximity marketing company Mediasmart

April 2020: Kaay Innovation acquires digital marketing start-up Webboombaa

April 2020: Dentsu Aegis Network in London announces 100% ownership of Merkle

April 2020: ShareChat acquires Kae Capital backed meme-sharing app Memer

July 2020: Publicis Groupe integrates BBH – creates a joint leadership for BBH-PWW in India

September 2020: Bango Marketplace partners with Gravity Integrated to launch in India

September 2020: ShareChat acquires video production company, HPF films

September 2020: WPP’s Wunderman Thompson acquires Velvet Consulting

November 2020: Evolve Digitas announces the acquisition of Thinking Folks in Gurugram

November 2020: Global Update: WPP merges AKQA and Grey to form AKQA Group

November 2020: Global Update: Geometry merges with VMLY&R to form VMLY&R Commerce

November 2020: VMLY&R and Glitch come together to integrate the agencies.

December 2020: Wondrlab announces its first acquisition with What’s Your Problem

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