Weber Shandwick buys out Indian partner MAA Group Holdings from JV PR agency Corporate Voice

Written by PTI | New Delhi | Updated: Feb 25 2013, 23:17pm hrs
US-based Weber Shandwick, part of the Interpublic Group, today said it has fully acquired the ownership of public relations agency Corporate Voice Weber Shandwick (CVWS) by buying out the stake of its Indian partner - MAA Group Holdings - for an undisclosed sum.

As part of an agreement reached between the two parties, Weber Shandwick will increase its stake in CVWS to 100 per cent, from 40 per cent earlier. MAA Group Holdings was the majority stakeholder in the Joint Venture.

Weber Shandwick Chief Executive Officer Andy Polansky said: "We have had a long relationship of 16 years and it is a natural evolution. There is a lot of growth opportunities in India and this was the right time to get full ownership here."

When asked about the financials of the deal, Polansky declined to disclose details. He said there will not be an immediate change in the name of CVWS.

"Both Weber Shandwick and Corporate Voice are brands with strong equity here in India. We are not rebranding immediately," he said.

Post the transaction, MAA Group Holdings Chairman Bunty Peerbhoy will continue as Chairman of CVWS. Atul Ahluwalia and Dilip Yadav also will continue as President and Executive Vice President, respectively.

Ahluwalia will report directly to Weber Shandwick Asia Pacific Chairman Tim Sutton, the company said.

CVWS has offices in New Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore and Kolkata.

New York-headquartered Weber Shandwick's network spans 73 owned offices in 31 countries. Affiliates and partners expand the network to 126 offices in 81 countries.