Mumbai-based Scarecrow Communications has been acquired by the international network, M&C Saatchi.
The 8-year-old Scarecrow was part of the new wave of independent agencies in India that started about a decade ago. It's currently the AOR (agency on record) for brands across categories including Viacom 18, Capital First, Emami, Future Generali, Zee Learn, Alcon Novartis, SebaMed (USV Pharma), Lactalis, Radio City, VTP, Mahindra, Business Standard, arthimpact, Anchor Panasonic, Reliance Capital among others.
In a joint statement, the three founders (Raghu Bhat, Manish Bhatt and Arunava Sengupta) of Scarecrow said, “We are very happy with this partnership. It’s no secret that in the past few years, we have had many suitors. But after meeting Moray MacLennan, David Kershaw and Jeremy Sinclair in London, we were clear that M&C Saatchi is the perfect partner for Scarecrow. That's because they have entrepreneurship in their blood. The culture of M&C Saatchi, that sprung from the personalities of the brothers themselves – irreverence, low tolerance for jargon, challenging the established order and the history of many larger-than-life campaigns – are qualities we identify with."
They added, "The M&C Saatchi network has fantastic capabilities in sport, entertainment and mobile – which are personal interest areas. We are confident that Scarecrow and its employees will gain from this move, in terms of training, opportunities and exposure to new areas.”
Scarecrow, they claim, will retain its own identity and will operate with full creative freedom, exactly the way it used to. However, as expected, there will be an integration with the global financial processes and compliance practices.
M&C Saatchi was founded in 1995 and has since grown to be the world’s largest independent advertising network. It has 27 agencies in the Americas, Europe, Africa, Middle East and Australasia and 8 specialist companies which include specialist firms like M&C Saatchi Sport & Entertainment, M&C Saatchi Mobile and the customer engagement agency, LIDA.
M&C Saatchi founder, Lord Maurice Saatchi said, “When I look at Scarecrow’s story over the last 8 years, it reminds me of the story of M&C Saatchi itself. It’s a story of hard work, determination and dedication. What they have achieved is truly remarkable. They are the embodiment of the founding Saatchi philosophy that nothing is impossible."
He added, "To welcome Scarecrow to the federation of like-minded, like-thinking entrepreneurs, the M&C Saatchi network, is a most important occasion for the company and for me. I’m sure Scarecrow M&C Saatchi will develop into the jewel in our crown and this is a historic start for a great new partnership.”
M&C Saatchi's Worldwide CEO, Moray MacLennan said, “Our strategy is simple, find top talent in key markets and give it the freedom, responsibility and backing to flourish. Brutal Simplicity of Thought and an entrepreneurial spirit have been the key to M&C Saatchi outperforming the market."
Richard Morewood, CEO of M&C Saatchi, Asia, said, “We’re delighted to welcome Scarecrow as partners into the M&C Saatchi Asia group. The team will add fantastic strategic and creative strength in India and across the whole region.”