During April, over 36,400* advertising professionals were laid off or furloughed due to the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic. Now Publicis Groupe agencies, which includes Digitas and Publicis Sapient, have joined those other shops by reducing staff numbers and cost cutting. Last week, Publicis Groupe agency BBH reduced its staff by 20%.
Digitas confirmed to AgencySpy that the agency has gone through a round of layoffs last week. According to the story, less than 5% of Digitas staff in the U.S. was impacted by the layoffs, according to a source with knowledge of the agency’s operations. A small number of furloughs were implemented, as well as executive salary reductions, in an attempt to limit the number of employees, according to this source.
Severance was given and the agency is providing healthcare coverage for an unspecified period, the source added.
“The focus of Digitas U.S.’s cost-cutting initiatives continues to be on serving our clients while protecting as many jobs as possible and ensuring we are best positioned for the future,” an agency representative said in a statement.
According to the same report, Publicis Sapient laid off around 1% of staff in the U.S. There was no mention of staff reductions at Leo Burnett or Burrell, both in Chicago.
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Publicis Communications East rolls Second Story, Rokkan into Razorfish
“By realigning the talent, capabilities, and work of Second Story and Rokkan to Razorfish, we will accelerate the combined capabilities and synergies that help businesses adapt and unlock growth for the future while building on Razorfish’s momentum over the past months,” a Publicis Groupe representative said in a statement.