Paris-headquartered Publicis Groupe, the globe's fourth largest agency holding company, on Thursday confirmed industry rumours that it is the mystery Romeo currently wooing Aegis Group.

Reads a terse Publicis statement: "Publicis confirms that very preliminary conversations have been held with Aegis Group plc in respect of a possible offer. At this stage, it is extremely premature to conclude that these conversations will lead to an offer for Aegis. A further announcement will be made if and when appropriate."

The question now occupying media and monetary speculators is whether, when and which other suitors will enter the fray?

Many wonder if Havas chairman, the corporate raider Vincent Bolloré who holds a 6% stake in the London-based media and research group, will quietly sit back and enjoy the sound of tinkling euros as the value of his pot accumulates - or whether his predatory instincts will get the better of him?

Others ask if world numero uno Omnicom Group is waiting quietly in the wings for an opportune moment to strike.

Or perhaps even a dark outsider: the troubled Interpublic Group, which sorely needs a transfusion to replace the media business it has haemorrhaged of late?

Fait vos jeux!

Data sourced from; additional content by WARC staff