Sorrell: “I’m Very Concerned About The Progress That WPP Makes”

Sorrell: “I’m Very Concerned About The Progress That WPP Makes”
SHARE
THIS



Despite reports of revenge and bitter acrimony, it appears Sir Martin Sorrell still has plenty of love in his heart for his old company, WPP.

Sorrell has revealed he is still a significant shareholder in the company he formed back in 1971 and that’s despite being unceremoniously dumped as CEO last April amid allegations of personal misconduct.

Yesterday, Sir Martin told the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland, that he wanted WPP to do well.

Speaking to news site CNBC, Sorrell said: “I remain a shareholder, and I think I’m the largest individual shareholder or a top 10 shareholder, in WPP so I’m very concerned about the progress that WPP makes too.

“Obviously it’s not been an easy period over the last six months or so in terms of major clients at WPP but having said that we’re very focused on that progress,” he said.

Since his departure, the 73-year-old Sorrell has poured his efforts into his new venture, S4 Capital, that many saw as a direct threat to WPP’s businesses.

In July last year, S4 acquired Dutch digital production firm MediaMonks for $463 million and in December bought San Francisco-based programmatic ad firm MightyHive for $204 million.

However, Sorrell has denied that S4 is any threat to WPP. “I can’t, for the life of me, believe that WPP is worried about little old S4Capital,” he told CNBC.

“We’re focused on three things: first-party data, digital content and programmatic media planning and, last but not least, is programmatic media planning and buying,” he said.

On the claims he was punted from WPP for misconduct, Sorrell said the company had “investigated the background to it (the allegation) and found nothing material. We moved on from then and I decided to go off and start something new.”

Not that WPP isn’t without its own worries. Late last year, a plunging share price and shrinking ad market forced newly-installed CEO, Mark Read, to announce 3500 job cuts from the company’s global workforce and the closure of as many as 80 of its agencies worldwide.

Many of the roles to be made redundant were back office jobs, with Read stating the company would re-invest in its creative agencies.

“We are fundamentally repositioning WPP as a creative transformation company with a simpler offer that allows us to meet the present and future needs of clients,” Read said at the time.

While Sorrell’s newfound affection for WPP may come as a bit of a shock to his former colleagues.

Just before Christmas, a senior WPP executive publicly chastised Sorrell for continually talking down the world’s biggest media company and his replacement, Read.

Johnny Hornby, CEO of WPP’s London-based The & Partnership, said Sorrell’s constant sniping was “disrespectful” and made him “look small”.

“When he left in the summer the company badly needed a change of direction and strategy that Martin had not delivered and he should allow Mark to get on now unhindered,” Hornby said.

Sorell had previously described WPP as a “car crash in slow motion” and its senior management as being “too Anglo”.

 

Please login with linkedin to comment

Mark Read sir martin sorrell WPP

Latest News

Highsnobiety Partners With Citizens Of Culture To Help Lead Its Media Partnerships In Australia
  • Media

Highsnobiety Partners With Citizens Of Culture To Help Lead Its Media Partnerships In Australia

Culture-leading publisher Highsnobiety continues to evolve its local operations with the appointment of Citizens of Culture as its strategic partner across media operations within Australia.  Highsnobiety is a premium global brand dedicated to cultural pioneers, with work spanning across digital platforms, print media, documentaries, cutting edge events, a shopping platform and a full service creative […]

Investigation Reveals That Amazon Destroys Thousands Of Dollars Of Unsold Stock, Including Laptops, TVs And Face Masks
  • Technology

Investigation Reveals That Amazon Destroys Thousands Of Dollars Of Unsold Stock, Including Laptops, TVs And Face Masks

An investigation by British broadcaster ITV has found that Amazon is destroying millions of items in unsold or returned stock. The report specifically focuses on one of the 24 warehouses the company has in the UK. According to ITV News, the destroyed items are largely unused and new, either returned items or those which never […]

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Witchery Partners With GlamCorner To Boost Subscription Shopping
  • Media

Witchery Partners With GlamCorner To Boost Subscription Shopping

Australian fashion brand Witchery has partnered with B Corp GlamCorner as part of GlamCorner’s subscription box offering as the demand for everyday essentials soars. This partnership marks another milestone for the Australian fashion industry towards becoming more circular and introducing more paths to reduce textile waste. Customers nationally will be able to rent more of […]

Curry Club For COVID-19 Relief, Powered By UnLtd, Challenges AdLand To Raise $100,000
  • Marketing
  • Media

Curry Club For COVID-19 Relief, Powered By UnLtd, Challenges AdLand To Raise $100,000

The media, marketing and creative industries are being encouraged to host their own ‘Curry Club for COVID’ before 30th June to help meet the ambitious $100k target set by its organisers. Curry Club for COVID, which was conceived by long-time adtech executive Peter Bray, sales director at Impact, and is powered by industry social purpose organisation […]

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
UnLtd’s ‘Goals for Good’ Soccer Tournament Celebrates 10 Years
  • Media

UnLtd’s ‘Goals for Good’ Soccer Tournament Celebrates 10 Years

The UnLtd Cup is returning for its tenth consecutive year, marking a decade of soccer shenanigans that’s raised nearly $500,000 for children’s mental health charity, KidsXpress. On July 22-23rd, 28 teams from across the industry will battle it out on the soccer field in the two-day tournament at Sydney University Sports and Fitness Centre, Darlington. […]

Mobile Pnone Shopping Online With A Debit Card
  • Marketing
  • Technology

Ultra Commerce Acquires Vesta eCommerce

Australian-bred company Ultra Commerce has acquired New Zealand-based company Vesta eCommerce, a global software business providing leading product data management solutions. The recent acquisition is a significant move for the business, which is Australian born, owned, and headquartered, but has built out a global presence as it pursues rapid growth in the eCommerce market. Connecting […]

Crater Teams Up With Director Luna Laure For ‘Harry’s Story’, Canteen’s Newest Campaign
  • Campaigns

Crater Teams Up With Director Luna Laure For ‘Harry’s Story’, Canteen’s Newest Campaign

Canteen’s latest campaign features the combined talents of Director Luna Laure and creative agency Crater. The campaign strives to raise awareness for young people affected by cancer. The awareness campaign centres around Harry Barentson, who at 12 years of age found out his pregnant mum had cancer. The campaign aims to bring awareness to Canteen’s […]