PRAGUE — Publicis Groupe is merging MSL’s operations in the Czech Republic into Kindred, the digital communications agency it bought last year, to create a new brand, Kindred.MSL.

Kindred.MSL’s team of around 35 will operate within the 100-strong team at Kindred, focusing on influencer marketing and strategic PR. The operation will be run by strategic director Martin Ježek (pictured), who heads up data, strategy and creative at Kindred.

Michal Porchanzka, former managing director of MSL in Prague, continues as part of the Kindred.MSL leadership team. Both companies share numerous clients, including Huawei.

In the Czech market, Kindred.MSL will focus on influencer marketing and strategic communication consulting. Its team will be based on specialist departments, led by communications experts, including Ježek and Tomáš Vozáb, head of reputation, who had been responsible for PR, influencer and event marketing at Kindred.

MSL’s network in Central and Eastern Europe includes offices in Poland, Bulgaria, Romania, Slovenia, Turkey and the Czech Republic, with 200 employees in the region. Activities are coordinated by the Warsaw hub, led by Sebastian Hejnowski, CEO of MSL CEE and chief growth officer at Publicis Groupe Poland.

The move will also enable the introduction of proprietary influencer marketing service MSL Fluency in the Czech market from September this year.

Tomáš Varga, CEO of Publicis Groupe in Central Europe said: “At Publicis Groupe, we want to combine expertise across agency teams and offer one comprehensive solution to clients in the spirit of our Power-of-One approach. Moving the MSL team under Kindred's wings made sense from the very beginning. The emergence of Kindred.MSL and the active use of the Fluency platform will move our PR and influencer marketing competences to the next level.”

Guillaume Herbette, global CEO of MSL, added: “The Central and Eastern European region is crucial for the dynamic development of MSL’s global network. MSL and Kindred joining forces will have a significant impact on strengthening MSL’s position in this part of Europe.”