Havas Group acquires Australian health communications agency Bastion Brands
APAC is home to more than half of the world’s population, and the health market size is expected to reach more than $300 billion by 2030 – making health brands’ investment and presence in the region more important than ever.
To continue expanding its reach in this key market, Havas Group has acquired Bastion Brands, Australia’s independent health communications agency.
Bastion Brands will integrate into Havas Health & You (HH&Y), the world’s largest global health network. This acquisition continues both HH&Y’s exponential growth under Global CEO Donna Murphy and its significant evolution in the Asia Pacific region under CEO of APAC & LATAM Charles Houdoux, taking the network’s headcount in Australia to over 350.
Bastion Brands has been a strategic partner of Havas Health & You since 2019, servicing clients across the business and working closely with Havas Village Australia partners. The agency was founded in 2012 by Simon Davies and has grown to become Australia’s leading pharmaceutical and consumer health marketing communications specialist.
With offices in Melbourne and Sydney, Bastion Brands is fostering a growing footprint of business in Southeast Asia. Its unique approach of blending ‘science and emotion’ in its communications solutions targeting health care professionals has been recognized with numerous awards and finalist nominations at the prestigious Prime Awards.
Yannick Bolloré, Chairman and CEO, Havas Group: “Bastion Brands is recognized for delivering significant and meaningful results for its strong client base of leading pharmaceutical companies across the world. Adding its capabilities to our global Havas Health & You network will provide specialized health communications for both that region and our clients globally. Bastion Brands also complements fast growth within our health PR business Red Havas in Australia, and we’re thrilled to officially welcome the Bastion Brands team to our Group.”
In Asia alone, HH&Y has grown at over 20% per annum, and acquiring Bastion Brands further solidifies its leadership across 10 countries in APAC: Greater China, Japan, South Korea, Australia, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Philippines. In response to rapid regional growth driven by increased awareness of health and wellness, the network has made significant investments in its Villages and senior leadership to foster growth throughout the region – establishing a regional hub for Southeast Asia and strengthening new talent in Japan and China, for instance.
Charles Houdoux, CEO of APAC & LATAM, Havas Health & You: “Continuing our work with Bastion Brands is a perfect fit for our expansion in Australia and Asia Pacific – a region where our clients have many strategic opportunities. We have partnered with Simon Davies and his team on meaningful, high-profile client assignments for several years, and have built a strong and effective relationship to deliver outstanding outcomes. This more formal relationship is a natural progression and I know it will be a successful one – for our clients, for Bastion Brands and for Havas Health & You.”
Simon Davies, Founder and CEO, Bastion Brands: “We are delighted to be joining the Havas family. The strength and momentum within Havas Health & You will help us accelerate our strong growth in Australia. Now with access to and support from the Havas network, we will be able to offer deeper and broader services to clients, globally developed insights and specialised health products, and even more exciting learning and growth opportunities for our staff.”
As part of Havas Group, Bastion Brands will add branding representative of Havas Health & You and work closely with partners across the network to integrate its business into projects across the region.
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