The Interpublic Group of Companies

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The Interpublic Group of Companies, Inc.
Traded asNYSEIPG
S&P 500 Component
IndustryAdvertising agency
PredecessorMcCann-Erickson, Inc.
Founded1930; 89 years ago (1930) (as McCann Erickson)
1961 (1961) (as Interpublic Group)
Headquarters909 Third Avenue
New York City, New York 10022
United States
Key people
Michael I. Roth, Chairman, CEO, & President[1]
RevenueIncrease US$9.71 billion[2] (2018)
Increase US$1.01 billion[2] (2018)
Increase US$637.7 million[2] (2018)
Total assetsIncreaseUS$15.62 billion[2] (2018)
Total equityIncrease US$2.43 billion[2] (2018)
Number of employees
54,000[2] (2018)

The Interpublic Group of Companies, Inc. (IPG) is an American publicly traded advertising company. The company consists of five major networks: FCB, IPG Mediabrands, McCann Worldgroup, MullenLowe Group, and Marketing Specialists, as well as a number of independent specialty agencies in the areas of public relations, sports marketing, talent representation, and healthcare,[3] it is one of the "Big Four" agency companies, alongside WPP, Publicis and Omnicom.[4] Michael Roth is the company's CEO.[1]


On October 2, 1930, IPG was founded in New York City as McCann-Erickson, when H.K. McCann Co. (founded in 1911) and Erickson Co. (founded in 1902) merged.[5] At the time, it was the largest agency in the ad industry.[6]

In 1960, McCann was restructured into four operating units, each reporting to a new holding company; the four units were McCann-Erickson Advertising (U.S.), McCann-Erickson Corp. (international), McCann-Marschalk and Communications Affiliates. The latter consisted of diversified communications agencies.[6] In January 1961, McCann was renamed Interpublic Group (IPG) and created the first marketing services management holding company with McCann-Erickson as a subsidiary.[7]

In Fall 1973, as clients began focusing more on international strategies, McCann-Erickson combined its domestic and international branches into a single worldwide agency under IPG.[6]

In 1997, the McCann-Erickson World Group was formed with several of IPG's different units. [8]

In December 2000, Deutsch Inc, reported by the New York Times at the time to be the largest and last independent agency, was acquired by IPG to be an autonomous unit.[9]

In 2001, IPG acquired True North Communications, the holding company for Foote Cone & Belding.[10] By then, in addition to True North, Interpublic's primary holdings included two wholly owned global advertising agency networks, McCann-Erickson Worldwide and the Lowe Group; five global specialized-services networks, Initiative Media Worldwide, Draft Worldwide, NFO Worldwide, Octagon, and Zentropy Partners; an Internet-services company; and Allied Communications Group, which managed Interpublic's specialized communications companies.[11]

In 2003, IPG agreed to pay $115 million to settle class action lawsuits brought by its shareholders; the shareholders had sued Interpublic after accounting irregularities led to restatements of financial results, causing the company's stock to fall.[12]

In March 2004, IPG renamed its McCann-Erickson World Group as McCann Worldgroup.[13]

On September 15, 2005, IPG announced plans to restate earnings for fiscal 2000 through 2004, due to problems in accounting for revenue, acquisitions and lease expenses.[14] On March 22, 2006, IPG posted a loss for the fourth quarter and restated results for the first three quarters of 2005, which reduced revenue by $14.1 million. It also announced its controller and chief accounting officer was leaving the company.[15]

IPG disposed of 51 businesses in 2005 and 2006, primarily outside the U.S.; the company said it exited 23 "loss-making international affiliates" in 2006.[16] IPG in April 2007 announced it agreed to buy Reprise Media, a search engine marketing firm.[17] In July of that same year, FCB-Ulka Advertising Private Limited, a subsidiary of IPG, was renamed DRAFTFCB+Ulka Advertising Pvt. Ltd.[18]

In July 2008, IPG formed a media buying and planning unit called Mediabrands (later IPG Mediabrands).[19]

In March 2014, IPG draftfcb was renamed as IPG's international network FCB.[20]

In January 2016, the merger of IPG groups Mullen in the US and Lowe and Partners worldwide was renamed as MullenLowe Group.[21]

In July 2018, IPG announced they were buying database marketing company Acxiom's Marketing Solutions business for $USD2.3 billion.[22]


IPG consists of dozens of businesses organized into six groups. There are three global networks: Foote, Cone & Belding (FCB); McCann Worldgroup; and MullenLowe; a media services company, IPG Mediabrands; a marketing services group, Marketing Specialists; and several independent domestic digital agencies.[2]


FCB is one of IPG's three global networks, its companies include the following:

  • FCB, the former Draftfcb, formed by a merger between Draft Worldwide, and Foote, Cone & Belding Worldwide. Currently owned by Syed Gousul Alam Shaon. MD and country head of Grey Dhaka.
  • FCB Health, a healthcare-focused agency formed by combining three healthcare agencies: ICC, Trio and Pace.[23]
  • HelloComputer, a Cape Town-based digital agency, which merged with Mesh Interactive in 2012.[24]
  • New Honor Society, a St. Louis, Missouri-based marketing agency, formerly known at Rivet/US, itself formed with a merger between marketing agency Zipatoni Company and Toronto-based FCB Direct.[25]

IPG Mediabrands[edit]

The IPG Mediabrands group is IPG's data management and media buying arm, its companies include the following:

  • Stickyeyes, a digital marketing company acquired by IPG Mediabrands in 2016, provides creative search and content marketing, and video production.[26]
  • Cadreon, IPG Mediabrands' ad-tech network which is involved in programmatic advertising.[27]
  • Ensemble Worldwide, a creative agency set up as part of IPG Mediabrands' Malaysia network.[28]
  • Healix, an agency focused on global life science and healthcare brands.[29]
  • Identity, formerly Diverse Communications, is an Australia-based agency focused on multi-cultural communications.[30]
  • ID Media is IPG Mediabrands' direct response planning and buying agency.[31]
  • Initiative, a media buying network which includes the former network BPN.[32]
  • IPG Media Lab, a digital marketing agency that studies digital technology for advertising programs, platforms and products.[33]
  • MAGNA, IPG Mediabrands' intelligence, investment and innovation unit. The group tracks and measures pricing and savings of the agency's media investments.[34]
  • Media Experts, a Canadian subsidiary that provides advertising media services for businesses.[35]
  • Orion, IPG Mediabrands' barter agency, which helps brands sell unsold products in exchange for advertising.[36] Orion's holding company includes the agencies NSA Media, OAG, Rapport and Wahlstrom.[37]
  • Promoqube, a Turkish social media agency.[38]
  • Reprise, IPG Mediabrand's agencies' digital and social media services provider, which was formed by combining mobile agency Ansible and social agency Society with search agency Reprise in 2018.[39]
  • UM, also known as Universal McCann, a global advertising and media agency, which includes agency J3.[32]

Marketing Specialists[edit]

IPG's Marketing Specialists group offer marketing services across a range of disciplines, its companies include the following:

  • Current Global, a midsized communications agency formed when Chicago-based Current Marketing merged with multimedia production house Creation.[40][41]
  • DeVries Global, a media communications agency.[42]
  • dna Communications, a healthcare agency.[43]
  • FutureBrand, a branding agency, which includes Amsterdam-based FutureBrand UXUS, formerly UXUS, and design and innovation company Hugo & Cat.[44][45]
  • Golin, an agency specializing in public relations, digital marketing and content development.[46]
  • Jack Morton Worldwide, a brand experience agency.
  • Octagon Worldwide, which includes Rogers & Cowan, a global marketing and public relations agency.
  • Weber Shandwick, a public relations firm.

McCann Worldgroup[edit]

McCann Worldgroup logo

Formed in 1997, McCann Worldgroup is IPG's global marketing services organization, with reportedly over 24,000 employees in over 100 companies as of November 2017,[47] its companies include the following:

  • Avrett Free Ginsberg, stylized as AFG&, a full service advertising agency.[48]
  • Commonwealth//McCann, a Detroit-based advertising agency.[49]
  • Casanova//McCann, formerly Casanova Pendrill, a Hispanic-focused advertising agency based in Orange County, California.[50]
  • Craft, an international adaption and production network of agencies.[51]
  • Fitzco, also known as Fitzgerald & Co., is an Atlanta-based agency.[52]
  • FP7, an agency in the Middle East.[53]
  • McCann (formerly McCann Erickson), an American global advertising agency network.[54]
  • McCann Health, a healthcare focused agency.[55]
  • MCN, or Middle Eastern Communication Network, an agency with 60 offices in 14 countries clients in the Middle East and North Africa.[56]
  • Momentum Worldwide, a New York City-based experiential marketing agency, which includes shopper marketing agency ChaseDesign and its subsidiary 10RedDesign.[57][58]
  • MRM//McCann, a direct and digital marketing agency based in New York City.
  • PMK*BMC, a Los Angeles-based entertainment and pop culture-focused agency that connects celebrities with brands seeking talent for content collaboration.[59]

MullenLowe Group[edit]

MullenLowe Group is one of IPG's three communications networks, formed in 2015 by the merger of IPG's U.S. agency Mullen with IPG's global creative network Lowe and Partners.[60] It consists of the following components:

  • MullenLowe, a marketing communications network focused on brand strategy, communications planning and through-the-line advertising, and which includes US network MullenLowe U.S. and Indian agency MullenLowe Lintas Group.[61]
  • MullenLowe Comms, which incorporates various PR divisions including MullenLowe salt, a strategic communications agency with offices in London and Singapore,[62] and MullenLowe PR, a US-based public relations agency.[63]
  • MullenLowe Mediahub, a global media planning and buying agency headquartered in Boston.[64]
  • MullenLowe Open, a global customer experience agency focused on customer relationship management (CRM), shopper and experiential campaigns.[65]
  • MullenLowe Profero, a digital marketing agency, formerly known as Profero, with services including creative ideation, customer experience (CX), design, eCommerce and analytics.[60][66]


IPG also has several independent marketing agencies.

  • Acxiom, a database marketing company.[67]
  • Big Family Table, a creative agency.[68]
  • Campbell Ewald, an advertising and marketing communications agency.
  • Carmichael Lynch, a Minneapolis, Minnesota-based creative agency.[69]
  • Deutsch Inc., a New York City-based marketing communications agency, which includes an in-house production company Steelhead.[70]
  • Elephant, a Brooklyn, NY & SF based digital marketing agency.[71]
  • Hill Holliday, a Boston, Massachusetts-based marketing and communications agency.
  • HUGE, a Brooklyn, NY-based digital marketing agency.
  • IW Group, formerly Imada Wong Communications Group, a West Hollywood, California-based agency.[72]
  • The Martin Agency, a Richmond, Virginia-based advertising agency.
  • R/GA, a New York City-based marketing and advertising agency.
  • Tierney, a Philadelphia, Pennsylvania-based agency.[73]


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