Publicis Groupe has tapped Microsoft to develop and debut Marcel, the holding company's AI-powered professional assistant platform that will operate across its global network of 80,000 people in 130 countries.
In June, Publicis Groupe Chairman and CEO Arthur Sadoun announced that the organization would be taking a year off from any awards programs or promotional investments, including the industry's biggest annual festival in Cannes, to shift its spend toward Marcel.
Sadoun sent out a note to employees on Monday discussing Marcel.
"I know that many of you have been curious to know what has been happening since we announced the platform last June. And the answer is, a lot," he wrote in the email. "Now, after six months planning, mapping, and workshops with many of you, more than a few wrong turns, but fortunately even more right ones, we're in a position to come back to you with a concrete update on the progress we've made."
The new Marcel partnership, the email states, allows Publicis to combine its technology capabilities from Publicis.Sapient with the "unparalleled resources, capabilities and expertise in artificial intelligence" of Microsoft.
"But we also chose Microsoft because they saw this as a true partnership, between two companies who have the same ambition: to radically change the way each of their industries work," the note adds. "It's this shared vision that will help turn Marcel into a real transformative force for our Groupe."
Marcel will help Publicis Groupe employees stay connected, identify project opportunities they want to work on in different markets, anticipate clients' needs with its predictive behaviors and more.
Publicis Groupe and Microsoft will showcase Marcel for the first time at Viva Technology in Paris on May 24.