Martin Sorrell’s ad firm sews up its first merger in India

Industry:    November, 2019

The youngest global advertising holding company, S4 Capital’s MediaMonks, makes its first significant move in India with a merger with Delhi-based content and production company WhiteBalance. S4 Capital was set up by British ad mogul Sir Martin Sorrell after his acrimonious exit from the world’s largest advertising group, WPP, a company he started over 30 years ago.

S4 Capital began operations in India earlier this year. Intent on doubling the India business in six months, its content practice MediaMonks will add 50 people with this merger, and “will also continue to invest in growing the content studio in Bangalore into a creative hub for APAC.” Said Sorrell, executive chairman S4 Capital: “India is a country very close to my heart. I’m delighted to continue to expand into this fast growing market, offering a wealth of talent and significant growth opportunities, and the merger with White-Balance is the next step for us to build a leading creative content business here.” S4 Cap’s media consultancy MightyHive, acquired in 2018 for $150 million, will also open an office in Mumbai.

Poran Malani, director, S4 Capital, India, told ET, “Our vision is to bring data driven content and tech-driven cross platform production to brands in India. With this merger we will be building Delhi as a center for content and studio, programmatic centered in Mumbai and a global hub in Bengaluru. Our intent is to make India a central part of the S4 Capital growth story.”