Havas Health quietly picks up Bristol-Myers Squibb's media business after Sanofi retention win

Bristol-Myers Squibb building
Havas Health & You quietly noted a media win of the global Bristol-Myers Squibb account in 2Q filings last week.

The new Havas Health & You is off to a solid start, especially considering the general downturn in the ad agency business for the first half of 2017. The business unit, created in March by the combination of Havas Health’s professional and consumer healthcare businesses, held steady for the first half and is forecasting growth for the second half of the year, Havas reported in its second-quarter financials late last week.

One positive gain was the quiet win noted in the report that Havas Media USA won the Bristol-Myers Squibb global media business in the first half. Bristol-Myer Squibb's ad spending budget was more than $450 million last year; it spent $170 million on cancer brand Opdivo alone during that stretch, according to Nielsen data.

Havas Health & You also heaved a pharma-induced sigh of relief, with chairman and CEO Yannick Bollore telling investors that it was very happy to have once again signed pharma client Sanofi, which he called its largest client and one that represented around 5% of its growth income.

“It is a clear demonstration that our together strategy is working because they have decided to use the U.S., which is by far the largest market in terms of spending in the health sector, to give us the media assignment in addition to a creative one," he said. "So now the team is working like hell to build everything," he added, noting that "we are very, very satisfied."

Havas Health & You is one of parent holding company Havas' three main business units, along with Havas Creative and Havas Media.