An Advert for Change

Publicis CEO Maurice Lévy had to retool the agency in the midst of recession and a digital revolution

Bruno Levy / Fedephoto

Publicis is the world's third largest ad agency, but CEO Maurice Lévy runs it with a distinctly French approach. TIME's Paris correspondent Bruce Crumley recently rendezvoused with him.

Despite the recession, Publicis remained profitable in 2009. How'd you do that?
First, we anticipated innovations in the market before our competitors. That not only helped us grow in developing segments, namely digital, but also helped us in traditional areas by enhancing our image. Also, we have a challenger's spirit. Recessions are never good, but they make your mind work harder and force you to make extra effort.

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