Microsoft and Publicis Groupe, the multinational advertising and PR company based in France, joined hands this week to build AI capabilities that will allow enterprise customers to leverage the power of online and offline data.

Publicis Groupe, which reported $9.733 billion in revenues during 2016, is one of the top four advertising companies in the world, along with WPP, Interpublic and Omnicom. The 78,000 strong company has operations in 110 countries, and counts big brands such as KFC, HSBC, Bacardi and Merck as its customers.

Source: Publicis Groupe 2016 Annual Report

The strategic alliance between the two companies is designed to bring together Publicis Groupe’s expertise in marketing and data analysis, and Microsoft’s strength in cloud computing and artificial intelligence. The application, offered as a new class of Platform as a Service (PaaS) will allow users to leverage AI to learn, reason and predict the customer journey through timely, relevant brand experiences.

““Our clients recognize that their marketing and business programs can only be effective if they leverage technology and data to become deeply relevant with empowered and highly mobile people. Our partnership with Microsoft is an example of how we combine our unique assets and services with their cutting-edge cloud and AI technology to help transform our Clients business in powerful new ways,” said Rishad Tobaccowala, Chief Strategy and Growth Officer, Publicis Groupe.”

This deal shows how big companies around the world are slowly warming up to AI. Though we have all been hearing about AI and how it will impact the future, we are yet to see its practical implication on a large scale. As more and more companies like Publicis start using AI and cloud computing power to dig deep into data and find actionable intelligence, it will allow practical applications built on AI to evolve, and slowly increase adoption rates.

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Source: Publicis Groupe