TitleChristmas Ad 2022
Campaign Christmas Ad 2022
Advertiser JD Sports
Brand JD Sports

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About Havas Play UK

-  Agency of the Year - Sports Business Awards 2022-  Campaign Best Places to Work 2022 & 2023 
We connect brands to fans through passions and purpose. By creating meaningful moments people want to spend time with, at the intersection of entertainment, sports, technology, and fandom.
Our services and capabilities are delivered by an in-house team across six divisions – Strategy, Creative, Activation, Content & Media Partnerships, Production and Measurement and Evaluation – enabling us to create and deliver truly 360, integrated campaigns whatever the brief.
StrategyIdentifying where and how brands and rights holders should play at the intersection of entertainment, sports, technology, and fandom.
CreativeBig ideas rooted in passions and purpose, that people want to spend time with.
Activation360 activation spanning sponsorship and partnerships, social, PR, talent and influencer, and experiential.
Content & Media PartnershipsContent and media partnerships for every channel.
ProductionIn-house end-to-end production studios.
Measurement and evaluationMeasuring the impact on your business and brand.
Our work has been recognised at some of the most highly regarded awards shows in our industry, including: The Football Business Awards, Creative Circle, The Sports Business Awards and The Campaign Experience Awards.
We're part of the Havas Group, owned by Vivendi, enabling us to collaborate within one of the most integrated communications networks globally.
The Havas Group has a talent pool of 20,000+ across 100 countries.
In the UK, the Havas Village London (HVL) is made up of 24 agencies based in one location, in London’s Kings Cross.
Check us out at: https://lon.havas.com/havas-play/ or see what we're up to by following HavasPlayUK on Instagram or Medium.
If you'd like to know more about working with us, or for us, then feel free to reach out to Charlie, at charlie.piggott@havas.com. 

Latest News

Havas launches ‘Play’ brand into the UK

Havas has today launched Havas Play – its global network dedicated to building meaningful experiences that place brands at the heart of people’s passions – into the UK market. The move will see UK creative agency Cake, which specialises in sport and culture, combine forces with Havas Media Network UK’s content and partnerships division JUMP to form the new agency offering headed by Rosie Holden, with both names retired.

The launch of Havas Play UK follows the announcement of the launch of the new global network in March 2023. Founded on the belief that activating where consumer passions are at drives more meaningful engagement, Havas Play consolidates Havas’ global expertise in music, sports, culture and other areas of fan activation under one unified brand.

Havas Play UK will bring together 100 market-leading specialists and expertise across strategy, ideation, activation, production, project management and distribution. Under an expanded leadership team, Havas Play will provide clients with a diverse, integrated offering that includes partnerships, influencer marketing, sponsorship and rights holder activation, experiential, content creation and branded experiences.

Havas Play will also leverage the unique benefits of being part of Vivendi, a global leader in entertainment, and delivers a proprietary approach to data and measurement across brand experiences.

Existing Cake clients including EE, Jaguar Land Rover, Major League Baseball, JBL and The FA, will continue to work with the same teams that make up Havas Play.

Rosie Holden, previously CEO of Cake, has been promoted to president, Havas Play UK, which will remain based in Havas UK’s Village in London. Holden brings over 20 years’ experience both in agency and in-house roles, working with and for the likes Vans, adidas, Reebok, Diageo, and PlayStation.

On the launch of Havas Play, Holden said: “It’s been such a privilege to lead an iconic agency like Cake for the last 4.5 years. I’m so proud to have been part of an agency that created such groundbreaking work consistently over its 25-year history. Our transformation into Havas Play is the obvious next step and by joining forces with a brilliant team of specialists across content, media partnerships and production and leveraging the power of the Havas Group and Vivendi, we’re in a position to all deliver big, bold, beautiful work at scale.”

Under Holden’s stewardship, Cake has more than doubled its headcount, all while maintaining double-digit profitability. Cake has upheld ‘Campaign’s Best Places to Work’ for two consecutive years and received the highest accolade ‘Agency of the Year’ at industry wide recognised Sport Business Awards. In 2023, Rosie was named in PRWeek UK's Power Book 2023 – its annual list of the most influential comms professionals in the UK today.

Holden will report into Patrick Affleck, CEO of Havas Media Network UK & Ireland, who said: “Bringing together Cake and JUMP will create a new and exciting agency in the UK. Operating at the intersection of culture, sport, content and technology, Havas Play will deliver ground-breaking solutions for our clients wanting to connect more meaningfully to the passions people love. Rosie’s deft stewardship of Cake sets Havas Play up for great things.”

Cake was co-founded by Havas UK’s chairperson, Mark Whelan, in 1998. In its twenty-five years, it has produced iconic work such as helping save Brockwell Lido with £100,000 of essential repairs covered by Evian (2001), covering the UK’s most accident-prone street with bubble wrap for confused.com (2010) and this year, teaching sign language to the nation through EE’s ‘new signing’ campaign.

Mark Whelan, Havas UK chairperson, said: “Rosie has transformed what we started in a muddy festival field all those years ago into a culturally connected international player. The name is changing but the spirit lives on; repurposed, rebooted and really excellent.”

Meanwhile JUMP’s services will be integrated into the Havas Play offering. Among JUMP’s most standout work includes securing immersive premium cinema partnership for KIA with DCM and partnering the BBC with gal-dem and The Face to help launch its programme ‘I May Destroy You’ which won Campaign’s Media Week Award in the media & entertainment category in 2021.

Havas Play is a new global network headquartered out of Paris, spanning 17 markets globally including Australia, France, United Kingdom, United States, India, Spain, Italy, China, Germany and Mexico. Greg James, Havas Media Network’s Global Chief Transformation Officer, serves as global chair responsible for global brand stewardship and facilitating access to key global specialists in creative and media groups as required. 

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