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Omnicom, Publicis seek EU approval for $35.1 bln deal

BRUSSELS, Nov 26 (Reuters) - U.S. advertising company Omnicom Group Inc and French peer Publicis Groupe SA have asked European Union antitrust regulators to approve their proposed $35.1 billion merger to create the world number one agency.

Omnicom, the world's second biggest agency, and No. 3 Publicis unveiled the merger in July, saying it would help them compete better with online rivals.

The European Commission said it would decide by Jan. 9 whether to clear the deal, according to a filing on its website on Tuesday.

Regulators in the United States, South Korea, Canada, India, Turkey and South Africa have already cleared the deal.

Omnicom's clients include PepsiCo, Apple Inc , Microsoft Corp and AT&T. Publicis has Coca-Cola, Verizon and Google Inc.

Omnicom and Publicis compete with current leader WPP , U.S.-based Interpublic, France's Havas and Japan's Dentsu.