Havas Media Group has announced the launch of a social equity private marketplace, made up of BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) and LGTBQ+-owned media businesses so clients can positively invest funds in underrepresented businesses.
This first-of-its-kind platform is the agency’s latest commitment to exploring Meaningful Media and recognizing the need for equitable treatment of businesses that are traditionally underrepresented in the marketing industry.
“In a time where consumer and client sentiment is focused on social action in many forms, we felt it was important to launch a product that allows clients to take positive actions with their media spend as desired, just like a bank can create or manage socially responsible funds. Our role is to advise clients of the opportunity to support these businesses in a system that previously did not make it easy for brands to support minority-owned companies,” said Havas Media Group Global CEO Peter Mears. “Today, it’s just as important where a brand shows up as what they have to say.”
Mears said the new global offering stems from Havas Media Group’s core strategy to “make a meaningful difference to brands, businesses, and people,” and its mission to understand the most “Meaningful Media”—the media channels, moments, and brands that really move consumers to action. Media that is trusted, engaging, and influential has the best chance of helping brands reach an engaged audience.
“As an agency that is built on delivering the best possible Media Experience and has invested in and investigated what we call ‘Meaningful Media,’ we do not believe that all impressions are created equal,” Mears said. “We also see that it is our duty to provide clients with alternative routes to reaching and engaging consumers if media spend is divested from one platform or partner into another. This is just one step we are taking within our own business. We have more work to do as an agency and industry when it comes to diversity and equity.”
“As an industry partner, we would encourage media businesses to be ‘meaningful’ in every sense—from the brand safety they provide as media partners, through to their corporate behaviors as organizations,” said Andrew Goode, EVP and Head of Biddable Media at Havas Media North America. “We could not be more excited to launch this program first in the US before expanding to our global clients.”
The rollout will begin in the US and Michelin and Moen will be among the first brands to benefit from the marketplace. A rollout to international markets is planned for later this year.
“We’re very pleased to have the opportunity to support Black, Indigenous, POC, and LGBTQ+ businesses and media partners through this marketplace and commend Havas Media for establishing this platform. This initiative will be important across our North American business,” said Edna Johnson, Michelin North America, VP Communication and Brands.