Havas’ global chief executive David Jones, who started his career with the group in Sydney, has stepped down from the top role.
Jones is leaving the group to establish a technology start-up for which he will be CEO and co-founder, according to The Wall Street Journal.
He was chief executive of Havas Worldwide before stepping up as boss of the Havas group in 2011. He started his Havas career in Australia in 1998 when he was appointed CEO of Euro RSCG Sydney.
Yannick Bollore, chairman and son of top shareholder Vincent Bollore, succeeds Jones at the holding company.
At the ad agency Jones is replaced with global co-president Andrew Benett.
The changes come after a power struggle between Jones and Yannick Bollore according to reports, however Jones has said his departure has nothing to do with the younger Bollore.
In a statement Jones said: “If I were going to stay in the industry it would be at Havas, but I have always had a burning desire to be an entrepreneur and this is too exciting an opportunity to not seize. Those people who know me know my two passions in business are social media and social responsibility and this new venture combines the two.
“I want to thank the Bollor√© Group and Vincent Bollor√© in particular for his support and mentorship over the last eight years and wish Yannick every success.”
Bollore also thanked Jones for his 15 years with Havas and said it was a "very exciting time for Havas".
"We are well on our way to realizing our goal of being the most integrated and innovative communications group of our industry. I would like to thank David for the impact he has made at Havas over the last 15 years.Thanks to his talent, David has contributed significantly to the improvement of the results and organization of the Group and its standing amongst clients and in the industry. I wish him all the best for his future business.”