- Accenture Interactive’s acquisition of Droga5 may be its last one for a while, according to Nikki Mendonça, global president of Accenture Interactive Operations.
- The advertising wing of the consulting firm is focused on organizing itself after Droga5 and other acquisitions.
- Accenture is working on ways to help clients with broad business challenges.
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Last month, Accenture Interactive snapped up independent creative agency Droga5 in its biggest acquisition to date, following similar moves it has made in recent years to become a stronger competitor to ad agencies.
Accenture InteractiveBut that acquisition spree is over for now as the company turns it attention to organizing its employees around the world, said Nikki Mendonça, global president of Accenture Interactive Operations.
"We’ve bought a lot already, so it’s time to put the checkbook away for few months maybe," Mendonça told Luma Partners’ Terry Kawaja at the company’s Digital Media Summit in New York on Tuesday. "What’s important now is to more effectively organize those assets, capabilities and talent, so that we can actually make sure that they’re organized more effectively around our clients’ problems."
Consulting firms including Deloitte, Accenture and IBM have been encroaching on the ad agency business by pitching themselves as more strategic and tech-savvy. While it doesn’t break out Accenture Interactive’s acquisitions, Accenture has shelled out about $5 billion towards for 90 acquisitions over the past five years. It made nine marketing-focused acquisitions in 2018 itself, including Adaptly in New York, New Content in Brazil, and Kolle Rebbe and Mackevision in Germany.
Now that it has all the pieces, Accenture is looking for ways to help clients with their business challenges beyond advertising.
"The conversation is becoming a lot more broad, and business transformation is inextricably linked to marketing transformation," Mendonça said. "That’s what is playing very well to the strengths of a broad-based company like Accenture."
That need for transformation was part of what prompted her in 2017 to leave the holding group Omincom’s media agency OMD for Accenture Interactive after 16 years.
"At OMD, media was a part of advertising, advertising was a part of marketing, marketing was a part of business, and it became quite frustrating when clients would come to us with big business transformation challenges," she said. "I didn’t necessarily feel like I had the arsenal to help clients solve those challenges."
Accenture Interactive also sees itself playing a bigger role as marketing gets more automated and artificial intelligence becomes more mainstream. To that end, the company employs thousands of AI specialists, data scientists and speech experts.
Mendonça also said partners like SAP, Oracle, Adobe, and Salesforce are becoming increasingly important to marketers as technology’s importance to their businesses increases.
"Een if a client procures the technology, they might have the Ferrari, but it’s stuck in the garage because no one can drive it," she said. "We help them with that."
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