Razorfish Bid War Nearing End, with Publicis in the Lead

The Wall Street Journal and Financial Times are reporting agency conglomerate Publicis is close to winning the multi-party bidding war for Razorfish. Citing Microsoft and agency sources, both papers report the winning bid for the global interactive agency is likely to come in at about $600 million. The Financial Times hears that Japan-based Dentsu offered more than Publicis, but according to WSJ, the French holding company appears to be winning out by pledging hundreds of millions in future media spending on Microsoft’s properties. Dentsu can’t compete on that front, since its media spend in Western countries is miniscule by comparison.

Two other holding companies, WPP and Omnicom, were reported to have shown interest in Razorfish when Microsoft first began shopping it around, but their pockets, evidently, weren’t deep enough to stay in the game. That said, all reports to date indicate deal talks are still fluid and Publicis is at minimum days away from signing a deal to buy the agency.

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