Agencies Chart Path To Office Reopening; TikTok Pivots To Hollywood

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On Again, Office Again

Agencies are starting to plan for office returns. Omnicom is developing a three-phase return strategy based on local government guidelines, Campaign reports. Phase one involves returning offices to 25% occupancy with social distancing rules in place, such as wearing masks, banning open food in cafeterias and closing small meeting rooms. Phase two bumps office capacity up to 50%. And phase three, full capacity, will only go into effect when social distancing protocols have been lifted. Employees are encouraged to take their temperature before coming into the office. Omnicom is likely to take extra time before returning to the office even after stay at home orders are relaxed, and it will not require employees to go back if they are not comfortable doing so.

ByteDance Revolution

TikTok swooping in to hire Kevin Mayer away from Disney, where he led the streaming business, is a sign of ByteDance’s ambition to be a global media powerhouse, reports The Information. American officials have been hounding ByteDance, the $75 billion Chinese conglomerate that owns TikTok (which it created after buying, a US music video-sharing app, in 2017). With control over policy and a larger role as ByteDance COO, Mayer’s role may involve negotiating with US regulators and other media-tech corporations. In a virtual all-hands meeting, TikTok advertising VP Blake Chandlee said the company will hold off on acquisitions for the foreseeable future due to regulatory concerns.

Eyes On The Prize(s)

Big tech companies aren’t making splashy deals for advertising or media companies due to regulatory scrutiny. But there are categories, such as cloud computing and business software, where the strategics are preparing for an acquisition spree, The Wall Street Journal reports. Uber and Grubhub are in merger discussions, though a deal is far from certain. Microsoft, Target and Facebook made relatively small, strategic takeovers (though Facebook buying GIPHY for $400 million is nothing to sneeze at). In marketing and ad tech circles, Constellation Software bought the mobile analytics company TUNE, and AppLovin acquired popular game developer MachineZone. And we’re two months in.

But Wait, There’s More!

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