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Publicis, one of the biggest agency networks on the planet, has announced plans to provide mentoring, support, and funding to 90 entrepreneurial projects around the world.
The initiative, called Publicis90, is part of the company’s 90th birthday celebrations and is open to startups doing innovative things in the digital field.
According to a press release sent to Ventureburn, Publicis90 is not limited to established startups and is also open to students and employees within the Publicis network of agencies.
The Publicis90 platform will be open for submissions until 28 February 2016. Projects will be pre-selected by region (Africa, Asia-Pacific, Europe-Middle-East and the Americas), with a first round of votes open to all Publicis Groupe employees (all projects submitted remain anonymous). A regional jury will then draw up a short-list from the pre-selected projects, before the final selection is made by a prestigious global jury that will pick the 90 most promising projects or start-ups.
The selected projects will be mentored by Publicis Groupe experts in marketing, communications, management and technology. They will also receive funding in the form of an investment ranging from 10 000 euros for projects about to be launched to 500 000 euros for start-ups that are already ramping up. Selected projects submitted by Publicis Groupe employees will have the benefit of a special internal incubation scheme.
The holders of the 90 selected projects will be invited to participate at Viva Technology Paris, a forum which Publicis says will bring together digital experts and some 5 000 startups from around the globe. The event — created by Publicis Groupe and Groupe Les Echos — will be held from 30 June to 2 July 2016 at the Paris Expo Exhibition Centre at Porte de Versailles. The 90 selected projects will be honoured at an awards ceremony held during Viva Technology Paris.
Maurice Lévy, Chairman and CEO of Publicis Groupe, declared: “Publicis90 is very much in line with the philosophy of Publicis Groupe and its founder, Marcel Bleustein-Blanchet. The idea is to help young entrepreneurs achieve their goals. Not just through investment but also by putting Groupe resources at their disposal for a year. Rather than look back and pat ourselves on the back for 90 years of history, we have taken the forward-looking approach of extending a helping hand to young entrepreneurs.”