Two years after the Arc London brand was brought back from the dead, it has once again been consigned to the agency graveyard with Publicis Worldwide UK merging it with both Publicis London and Poke to form a single integrated shop, Publicis Poke.
The new entity will have 245 staff based at 82 Baker Street in London, and take an “audience-centric” approach to offer a wider range of disciplines to clients.
Nick Farnhill, formerly CEO of Publicis London and co-founder of Poke, will be CEO of the new agency. He said: “Planning and creating Publicis Poke has been like starting over with all the excitement and opportunity that comes with launching a new business. We’re tech optimists passionate about building future-fit brands that strive to deliver living ideas in a connected world.
“Bringing together the diverse and specialist talent we have across our current businesses into a single new creative company will transform the way we operate, execute ideas and grow.”
Publicis London executive creative director Dave Monk becomes ECD, while Poke co-founder and ECD Nicolas Roope takes up the role of creative chair. Publicis London managing director Trent Patterson will be MD of the new agency.
Arc London, which can trace its roots back to one of the UK’s founding sales promotion shops, IMP, was renamed Leo Burnett in 2015 only to be reborn in 2017 when Publicis axed Vivid Brand and Saatchi & Saatchi X. Arc alumni include many of the UK agency world’s “top faces”, with John Farrell, Chris Satterthwaite, Ian Priest, John Quarrey, Andy Blackford, Dave Harris and the late Mike Spicer all plying their trade at the agency.
Publicis Group UK chief executive Annette King said: “This is a significant moment that sees our strategy manifest into a new kind of agency, which combines specialist talent and skills to better service our clients.
“Publicis.Poke is a desiloed agency that brings fluidity to all the places that a brand can exist and one that recognises technology has created a continuous world for consumers.”
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