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Publicis to invest 300 million euros in AI plan over next three years

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FILE PHOTO: A logo of Publicis Groupe is seen at its exhibition space, at the Viva Technology conference dedicated to innovation and startups at Porte de Versailles exhibition center in Paris, France June 15, 2022. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier/File



Voinews, Jakarta - Publicis, the world's largest advertising group by market value, said on Thursday it will invest 300 million euros ($326.94 million) in artificial intelligence (AI) over the next three years, as part of its new plan to become "the industry's first AI-powered intelligent system".

The group said in a film presentation - ahead of it annual results publication in February - that it will invest 100 million euros in 2024 alone, fully funded by "internal efficiencies" and with no dilutive impact on its operating margin.

The maker of the Heineken and Barilla pasta campaigns reported in its presentation organic growth in 2023 of 6.3 per cent, exceeding the 5.5 per cent to 6 per cent guidance range shared in October.

"In terms of strategy, it was important for us to show the financial market that we were starting from a position of strength," said CEO Arthur Sadoun in a press conference, regarding the early figure.

Publicis said in its presentation that it plans to integrate AI further into its current platform model, connecting every individual in the company to an entity called "CoreAI", that the group started engineering in the second half of 2023, to start implementing it in the first half of 2024.

"CoreAI is based on the data we have acquired, but also the one that we have built over this past decade," Sadoun said.

Half of the 2024 investment will be focused on upskilling and training people as well as recruitment, while the other half will be dedicated to tech, licences, software and cloud infrastructure.

Asked about prospective acquisitions, Sadoun answered, "our transformation is behind us", adding that the group will now focus on lesser investments in tech, IP and talent.

Publicis' recent strong performance runs counter to a general slowdown in the advertising industry, seen as a bellwether for broader economic health//VOI

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