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Posted: 3/6/2012
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Havas Media Advertising Firm Boosts Client Services with Faster Reporting and New BI Capabilities

Havas Media wanted to improve operations and client services with better business intelligence (BI) tools. After evaluating more than 20 solutions—including those from Oracle and IBM—Havas Media implemented a Microsoft data warehouse and BI solution to take advantage of enhanced reporting capabilities. As a result, it has cut report generation time by 80 percent and improved client services. The company is more competitive with the new solution and believes that BI services will drive business growth.

Business Needs

Havas Media is a division of Havas, a global advertising and communications group with headquarters near Paris, France. Its marketing teams develop multimedia campaigns for industry-leading clients. The company wanted a better BI strategy to improve operations and add value to its services.

* We have cut the time it takes to create custom reports by 80 percent with a BI solution based on SQL Server 2012. As a result, we’ve gone from a reactive to a proactive approach. *

Tony Jaskeran
Head of Business Intelligence
Havas Media

The company faced several challenges without a corporate BI platform. Like most advertising firms, Havas Media is a holding company for many smaller agencies that focus mostly on niche markets. Because the agencies work independently, it was difficult to obtain a comprehensive view of the business. Tony Jaskeran, Head of Business Intelligence at Havas Media, says, “In general, it’s hard for global CEOs to look at the performance of a company across all the operating units if they don’t have an enterprise BI tool.”

In addition to wanting to improve business insight on a global scale, Havas Media sought to enhance services at individual agencies. In a typical scenario, an agency assembles a team dedicated to each client. To help design a marketing strategy, the team prepares custom reports with insight analytics that include information such as business performance as well as marketplace and digital media trends.

Creating reports was a labor-intensive process. Analysts pulled information from multiple sources, checked it for accuracy, and then prepared reports using spreadsheet software. The project could take up to two days to complete. Jaskeran says, “Without a BI platform, creating individual insight analytics for each client was very time-consuming and costly.”

Jaskeran also believed that BI capabilities were needed to grow and compete with newcomers in the market. “Traditionally, we made our money by buying and selling media, but now profit margins are more challenging,” he says. “In the future, new revenue streams are going to come from insight analysis.” Havas Media wanted to enhance client services with a new BI solution.


Havas Media began designing a new BI strategy in January 2010 and evaluated approximately 20 vendors including Microsoft, Oracle, and IBM. The company ultimately chose a data warehouse with self-service BI tools based on SQL Server 2012 Enterprise data management software. “The deciding factor in choosing SQL Server 2012 was the local authoring capability,” says Jaskeran. “We wanted to give end users the ability to work with data with very little IT help.”

Havas Media manages more than 100 terabytes of complex data, and it needed a technology partner to help implement the solution. “We’re loading 300 million rows of data every single day here from multiple sources, and by the end of the year we expect the number to reach 1 billion,” says Jaskeran. “So we chose Corbus to help us implement the solution because of its expertise from a software engineering perspective.”

The company’s end users can quickly analyze large data sets with Microsoft SQL Server PowerPivot for Microsoft Excel 2010. They also work with Power View, a self-service BI data exploration and visualization feature in SQL Server 2012 Reporting Services that they can launch in Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010. Havas Media publishes data for both Microsoft Excel 2010 spreadsheet software and Power View with the Business Intelligence Semantic Model in SQL Server 2012 Analysis Services. The company also looks forward to implementing Microsoft Atlas with the new data warehouse. Part of Microsoft Advertising, Atlas includes a suite of digital media tools that agencies can use to optimize marketing campaigns.


Havas Media has significantly cut reporting time and enhanced services to clients with the Microsoft BI platform and tools. It is using the solution to gain better operational insight and expand its business potential.

Cuts Report Generation Time by 80 Percent

With better BI tools and faster access to data, Havas Media can quickly produce insight analysis reports for clients. “We have cut the time it takes to create custom reports by 80 percent with a BI solution based on SQL Server 2012,” says Jaskeran. “As a result, we’ve gone from a reactive to a proactive approach. “

The solution helps the company both save time and enhance client service. “Historically, we would present data to clients, and then they would ask questions and wait for us to do an insight analysis,” says Jaskeran. “Now, we can prepare the analysis with our initial report and immediately recommend a strategy.”

Improves Operational Insight

The company has gained better business insight and strengthened its competitive advantage by eliminating information silos. “We believe this is the first time in this industry that you can have a holistic view of all your operating divisions, such as Internet data, offline information, and financial transactions,” says Jaskeran. “With SQL Server 2012, we can have a complete view of marketing campaigns.”

Havas Media can also identify which clients will benefit most from enhanced services. “Using SQL Server 2012 BI tools is obviously a win for both us and our clients,” says Jaskeran. “We’re offering them greater insight so that they can do more of what they do best.”

Increases Revenue and Opportunities

With SQL Server 2012, Havas Media believes it can generate more revenue in addition to providing its clients with high-quality business insight. It is already using the new tools in campaigns for several major clients. “We anticipate that SQL Server 2012 BI capabilities will provide a significant revenue stream for the company,” says Jaskeran. “Our people actually have the opportunity to provide a much more refined and focused offering, and to expand business intelligence into a major part of the business.”

This case study is for informational purposes only. MICROSOFT MAKES NO WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, IN THIS SUMMARY.
Solution Overview

Organization Size: 5600 employees

Organization Profile
Havas Media is a division of Havas, a leading advertising and communications group with operations in 118 countries. Its services include media, digital, direct, entertainment, and sports marketing.

Software and Services
  • Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Enterprise
  • Microsoft SQL Server Analysis Services
  • Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010
  • Microsoft Excel 2010
  • Microsoft Services
  • Microsoft SQL Server Reporting Services
  • Microsoft SQL Server PowerPivot for Microsoft Excel

Vertical Industries

United Kingdom

Business Need
Business Intelligence and Reporting

IT Issue
Data Warehousing


Corbus Microsoft Services