The company founded by Jean-Claude Decaux in 1964 has been part of the urban landscape around the world since its creation and JCDecaux's history is inextricably linked with a number of major historic events.
AT THE HEART OF THE CARNATION REVOLUTION IN PORTUGAL
In 1971, JCDecaux won a contract to install 300 bus shelters in Lisbon. Portugal - which had been a dictatorship since 1926 - and thus became the first non-French speaking country to be equipped with the Group's advertising bus shelters. In April 1974, the Group had just signed a contract with the city of Cascais when the Carnation revolution broke out. In the chaos that ensued in Lisbon when the dictatorship was overthrown, some local media noted that JCDecaux's bus shelters were the only parts of the city that were still being cleaned and maintained - proof of the quality of service provided by the Group.
THE FIRST WESTERN COMPANY IN EASTERN EUROPE
AJCDecaux established itself in West Germany in 1982 and, by the late 1980s, it had several contracts in Hamburg, Saarbrücken and Cologne. When the Berlin Wall fell in November 1989, a team led by Jean-Françoise Decaux went straight to Leipzig, in East Germany - a region that was still deemed unattractive by western companies. Following this visit, in February 1990, the Group was the first company authorised to operate advertising furniture in public areas of Leipzig.
While this geopolitical event gave the Group the opportunity to expand into Eastern Europe, it marked, above all, a major historical turning point for the German nation, which JCDecaux wished to acknowledge in its own way. On 3 October 1990, the date of German reunification, the advertising campaigns on 10,280 advertising panels were replaced by the message "Alles Gute Deutschland", Good Luck Germany.
THE 2000 OLYMPICS : A GATEWAY TO THE PACIFIC
Sydney was chosen to host the first Olympic Games of the new millennium in 1993 and intended to use the event to emphasise its position at the economic crossroads of the Asia Pacific region. In 1997 JCDecaux Group was awarded a contract to install street furniture in Sydney. In partnership with Australian designer Philip Cox, JCDecaux proposed a wide range of advertising street furniture to be installed throughout the city including bus shelters, newsstands and phone kiosks. With this contract, the Group obtained maximum visibility among advertisers and city authorities, in particular during the Olympic Games, and this exposure accelerated its development in Asia Pacific.
Thanks to its close relationships with both cities and their citizens, the Group has used its advertising space at key moments in history to support and mark historic events. For example, in Johannesburg in December 2013 the advertisements on the Group's billboards were replaced with portraits and quotes by Nelson Mandela in order to pay him a final tribute.
Johannesburg, South Africa