October 4, 2017 / 7:52 AM / 14 days ago

Publicis shares rise on CapGemini comments on advertising M&A: traders

PARIS (Reuters) - Shares in advertising group Publicis (PUBP.PA) rose to the top of France's benchmark CAC-40 index .FCHI on Wednesday, lifted by comments about consolidation in the industry made by the head of CapGemini (CAPP.PA), traders said.

Paul Hermelin, the head of software and consultancy group CapGemini, told French newspaper Le Figaro that CapGemini could be pushed towards a deal in the advertising sector if its rival Accenture (ACN.N) made a takeover in that industry.

“We are working on a lot of fronts, such as cyber security, big data, clouds and artificial intelligence, which are at the heart of our business,” Hermelin told the paper in an interview.

“But if Accenture bought a major global advertising company, the pressure put on us by the market and our shareholders would be big. In that situation, we would have to think of how to move into the advertising industry,” he added.

Publicis shares were up 0.9 percent in early trading, outperforming a 0.1 percent dip on the CAC-40.

Officials at Publicis could not be immediately reached for comment on the matter.

The advertising sector has witnessed several takeover deals of late, with Vivendi (VIV.PA) acquiring Havas (HAVA.PA) and Bain Capital aiming to buy Japan’s Asatsu-DK Inc (9747.T).

Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta, Blandine Henault and Matthieu Protard; Editing by Louise Heavens

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