Marketing Report
Publicis Groupe proposes change to its governance structure

Publicis Groupe proposes change to its governance structure

Publicis Groupe has announced a proposed change to the company’s governance that will be put to a shareholder vote at its Annual General Meeting on 29th May, 2024.

Publicis has undergone a period of sustained momentum over the past years, thanks to its unique model adapted to the needs of some of the world’s leading companies, its unmatched capabilities and the depth of its talent bench.

To further support that dynamic, and the leadership teams behind it, and in anticipation of the end of his mandate in 2025, Maurice Lévy, Chairman of the Supervisory Board, submitted to the Groupe’s governing bodies a proposal to change the company’s governance. This change would see the company shift from a dual structure corporation with a Supervisory Board and Management Board (Directoire), and instead adopt the more widespread model of a single structure corporation with a Board of Directors.

Following a lengthy and rigorous process, the Supervisory Board unanimously approved the proposal, which will be subject to a vote by shareholders during the upcoming Annual General Meeting.

In this new structure, Arthur Sadoun would become Chairman and CEO of the Board. His appointment would be accompanied by the creation of the role of Lead Director, and the reinforcement of the Board’s committees, as part of a well-balanced governance model and in line with AFEP-MEDEF guidelines.

Maurice Lévy, Chairman of the Supervisory Board, would be named Chairman Emeritus in order for the Groupe to continue to benefit from his insight, experience, and leadership. In addition to attending board meetings, Maurice Lévy would preside over a mixed group of board members and executives, with a clear focus on innovation and foresight.

These changes would allow for the continuation of the partnership formed by Lévy and Sadoun, which in the past seven years has seen Publicis become first in the industry on market capitalization. 

Maurice Lévy, Chairman of the Supervisory Board, Publicis Groupe: “Publicis Groupe has a long history of anticipating change and transforming itself to face the future. The primary responsibility of any board is to ensure that a company has both the governance structure and the teams it needs to lead it forward. With this in mind, I proposed changing the governance of the Groupe in order to put in place a Board of Directors, with Arthur Sadoun as Chairman and CEO. It’s the most effective way of maintaining the Groupe’s success, now and in the long term. I’m delighted that the Supervisory Board was unanimous in its approval of this change, and confident that our shareholders will give it their support, seeing it as the means of preserving and perpetuating the outstanding results that have taken our group to new heights.”

Arthur Sadoun, Chairman and CEO, Publicis Groupe: “The aim of this change in governance is simple: to preserve the driving forces behind the Groupe’s success and maintain the model that has made Publicis our industry’s most valuable company in terms of market capitalization. It will also allow us to continue the duo that we have formed with Maurice Lévy since 2017, which has seen Publicis extract itself from the pack and emerge as a clear leader in our sector. The continuity of our partnership, combined with the incredible talent of our teams around the world and our best-in-class capabilities make us more confident than ever in our ability to help our clients transform and thrive in this ever-changing environment, and drive even greater value and innovation for all of our stakeholders. For those reasons, I hope that our shareholders will support this proposal.”