LONDON--Lord Chadlington has told the Echo Chamber podcast that Huntsworth's deal with Chinese firm BlueFocus will aim to transform Grayling's global offering.

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The Huntsworth CEO told podcast co-hosts Arun Sudhaman and Robert Phillips that the decision to sell almost 20 percent of the group to BlueFocus came about primarily from a desire to "completely change the main agency, Grayling."

Specifically, said Chadlington, he hopes to tap into the Chinese firm's digital expertise, rather than simply using the investment to pay down Huntsworth's debt. 

Chadlington also addressed the issue of ethics, noting that he and BlueFocus CEO Oscar Zhao will develop a report that focuses on the compliance issues and ethical standards that the alliance must adhere to.

“These alliances only work if the chief executives decide they are going to make it work," added Chadlington, responding to a question about Dentsu's investment in Publicis. "It’s all about will, and our will is iron in this regard."

He also revealed that the alliance would create four digital hubs, in Singapore, London, the Middle East and Frankfurt, and that new leadership will be hired at both a group-level and Grayling-level in Asia-Pacific and North America.

The Echo Chamber’s regular news round-up explores Text 100 and APCO's unusual decision to jointly pitch for the BlackBerry global business. Other topics in the spotlight are the reputation risks created by corporate supply chains in emerging markets, and a UK court case that highlighted industry fraud.

The Echo Chamber is sponsored by Diffusion and produced by TVC Group.

Listeners can subscribe to the show via the podcast feed here, or via iTunes here. Alternatively, you can listen to the show here.