BETC to launch in Brazil with Ray and Barradas

Rémi Babinet: the founder and chairman of BETC
Rémi Babinet: the founder and chairman of BETC

BETC, the Havas-owned agency brand with offices in Paris and London, will launch in Brazil with former FBiz chief executive Gal Barradas and Erh Ray, the former chief executive of Borghierh/Lowe, as its founders.

Barradas and Ray will lead the new agency, which will be based in São Paulo and become the third hub in the BETC network.

Barradas ran the French agency FBiz, which is owned by WPP, until a few months ago, while Ray left the São Paulo agency Borghierh/Lowe 18 months ago.

The pair will launch the agency in the coming months, with additional members of staff and an official launch date to be announced next week. Rémi Babinet, the founder and chairman of BETC, will fly to Brazil for the official launch on Tuesday (4 February).

No one at BETC would comment on the planned São Paulo office ahead of the official launch next week.

The news follows the shock departure of Matthew Charlton and Neil Dawson, the founders of BETC London, earlier this month.

Andrew Stirk, BETC London’s former executive head of planning, and Rosie Bardales, a former creative director at Wieden & Kennedy Amsterdam, replaced them.

BETC has been planning to launch in Brazil for some months and has been looking around the country for potential launch founders. The agency already has some clients lined up.

Havas’s other creative network Havas Worldwide also already has offices in São Paulo and Rio.

It is understood that one driver for a hub in Brazil was the upcoming sporting events such as this summer’s 2014 football World Cup and the 2016 Olympics in Rio.

Babinet and Eric Tong Cuong founded the agency Babinet Tong Cuong as part of Havas in 1994. It then became BETC when Mercedes Erra joined in 1995. Tong Cuong left the business in 2002.

Its original agency BETC Paris is one of the largest creative agencies in France, with more than 1,000 staff. It is behind work such as the Evian "baby & me" viral last year.

BETC London employs around 35 people and was launched in 2011, with Charlton, a former managing director of TBWA London, as its chief executive and Dawson, the chief creative officer for Philips at DDB London, as its executive creative director.

BETC London won the global Bacardi advertising account last year, and also runs the European advertising business for Diet Coke.

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