As was widely tipped, reports out of the UK today appear to confirm that Mark Read will succeed Martin Sorrell as WPP’s next CEO.
Read is currently WPP’s co-chief operating officer and has been regarded as the favourite for the job ever since Sorrell spectacularly quit the business back in April.
As yet there has been no official confirmation from WPP, but it is believed the announcement will be made during the company’s financial reporting next Tuesday UK time.
B&T has sought comment from WPP AUNZ.
A spokesperson telling UK media: “We will not be drawn on the timing of the naming of our next chief executive, nor on who that may be.
“As soon as there is an agreement with a candidate we will be obliged to make an announcement to the stock exchange,’ he said.
Read is a WPP veteran and had a number of things going in his favour to win the top job – he’s well liked, digital savvy and well across WPP’s businesses and culture.
His time at WPP includes 10 years on the board. He previously ran WPP Digital, the arm responsible for the group’s digital investments, and more recently served as chief executive of WPP subsidiary Wunderman, the international marketing network.
Other candidates for the CEO role had included David Kenny, the senior vice-president of IBM’s Watson and Cloud Platform division, who was interviewed for the position but dropped out of the running early. While Australian media veteran and former Ten boss Hamish McLennan’s name had also been thrown into the mix, however, it’s not understood how serious his candidacy actual was.