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VML acquires IM2.0 in China; launches VML IM2.0

VML logoVML, part of the Y&R network, has expanded into China with the launch of VML IM2.0. The company has acquired IM2.0 Interactive Group, one of China’s leading digital marketing agencies. The deal is subject to regulatory approval.

Established in 2008, IM2.0 employs approximately 230 people across offices in Beijing and Shanghai. IM2.0 is ranked in both the top 10 digital creative and top 10 digital media agencies in China by DamnDigital and was named among Red Herring’s Asia Top 100 companies. Named Agency of the Year 2013 in China by the Mobile Marketing Association, IM2.0’s client portfolio includes Dell, adidas, Mondelez, China Merchant Bank and Haier.

“IM2.0 is an industry leader in China and an essential asset to VML’s growth in Asia. With the addition of VML IM2.0, we now support key global client partnerships with a robust offering for China’s unique and fast-growing digital landscape,” said Jon Cook, Global CEO and President at VML.

VML IM2.0 will be led by IM2.0’s Chief Executive Officer Chris Tung and Chief Operating Officer Yi-Chung Tay. Both Mr Tung and Mr Tay are former Marketing VPs from PepsiCo Greater China, with many years of marketing, digital innovation and strategy experience between them. Under their leadership in the last three years, IM2.0 was able to provide a powerful combination of agency partner service to clients, which combines a deep understanding of client needs with highly actionable marketing strategy and results-driven digital execution.

“We are creating the agency of the future with the combination of VML’s world-class digital capabilities and IM2.0’s China market expertise. IM2.0 has always focused on working with great brands at the strategic marketing level, as a business partner. The unparalleled level of collaboration between strategists, creatives, technologists and media specialists enabled IM2.0 to create innovative solutions to marketing challenges every day and made IM2.0 one of the most exciting and fun agencies to work in. Now, with VML IM2.0, we have created a digital powerhouse that is the most attractive platform for digital talents in China,” explained Mr Tung.

This is part of VML’s continued expansion in the Asia-Pacific region, following the opening of VML Tokyo in March 2013. On a global scale, June 2013 saw VML also expand to Poland and to South Africa, with the launch of Native VML.

“We are proud of the partnership that is Y&R Advertising and VML, and VML IM2.0 is a valuable addition to our incredibly strong digital partner network that started with VML Qais. From Sydney to Singapore, India and Indonesia to Tokyo and now China, we are building the agency of the future with the alignment of Y&R Advertising and VML,” added Matthew Godfrey, President of Y&R Asia.

VML now has 22 offices with more than 1,700 employees worldwide.