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Americans in Paris: The J. Walter Thompson Company in France, 1927–1968

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  18 February 2015


J. Walter Thompson (JWT), the leading American advertising agency until the 1970s, established a branch office in Paris in 1927. While many of JWT's worldwide branches became the leading agencies in their respective countries, notably Great Britain and Germany, JWT-Paris foundered from the late 1920s through the early 1960s. This article focuses on the reasons why: cultural clashes between the French and Americans, a regulated and protected French market, anti-Americanism among French businesses, and American condescension and insensitivity. It concludes with an analysis of and the reasons for JWT-Paris's achievement of limited success by the late 1960s.

Enterprise & Society , Volume 4 , Issue 3 , 01 September 2003 , pp. 471 - 501
Copyright © The Author(s) 2003. Published by Cambridge University Press on behalf of the Business History Conference. All rights reserved.

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