In a move that likely signals the final phase of Vincent Bolloré's stalking of Aegis Group, the corporate raider-cum-chairman of marketing services giant Havas is wooing a media-oriented successor to take over from current group ceo Philippe Wahl.
The chosen one - if he accepts - is Fernando Rodés Vilá, chief executive of Havas's Media Planning Group.
It might prove a divisive appointment within the executive washrooms of Euro RSCG, Havas' highly regarded global creative network. Insiders suggest that creative egos are pallid at the thought of rule by a number-cruncher.
But the putative appointment of Vilá make a great deal of sense in the context of a takeover move on Aegis, in which Bolloré has built a 25% stake.
And equally logical if a looser, arms-length, association is sought. Analysts and media observers concur that the exploitation of common ground - and common clients - is likely to enjoy greater success with media savants at the helm of each company.
Meantime, Vilá is said to be contemplating Bolloré's offer. Few think he will refuse, especially as the Vilá family is Havas' third largest investor and acted as presiding archbishop at Bolloré's coronation last summer - on Bastille Day, as it happens!