WPP’s Joint COO: “I Don’t Feel Like We Are In A Limbo Period”

WPP’s Joint COO: “I Don’t Feel Like We Are In A Limbo Period”

WPP’s new joint chief operating officer, Mark Read, has spoken publicly for the first time since the group’s CEO, Martin Sorrell departed from the business in April.

In an interview with Campaign, Read dished the dirt on the ad giant’s challenges, strategy and workplace culture in the new post-Sorrell era.

First and foremost, Read admitted to Campaign WPP has some hurdles to overcome.

“We recognise the group has some challenges or our revenue growth would be stronger,” he said.

For Read, the biggest shift now for the group is “to focus on our clients, not on ourselves”.

When Campaign asked what WPP’s new “narrative” is, given its state of ‘limbo’, Read was quick to respond, “I don’t feel like we are in a limbo period”.

However, Read was also open in admitting there would be no quick fix moving forward.

“There’s no one single bullet in terms of getting the business back growing.”

Adding, “The new narrative, such as it is, is becoming closer to our clients, becoming closer together, putting data and technology more at the heart of what we want to do.”

When asked the toll Sorrell’s exit had taken on the group, Read said, “Martin was important and there will be times when I need to play that role. But he wasn’t the only reason we won new business.”

“Different holding company CEOs play different roles. I think you need to lead from the front in this industry. Ultimately it’s the work that should speak for itself – not just your relationships,” he added.

Looking ahead, Read said, “We’re positive. I’m smiling. I wouldn’t say enjoying it is necessarily the right word.”

Sorrell resigned from WPP in mid-April after the company announced an investigation into “alleged personal misconduct” against him.

“The previously announced investigation into an allegation of misconduct against Sir Martin has concluded,” a statement by WPP said.

“The allegation did not involve amounts that are material.”

Sorrell has “unreservedly” rejected the allegation that he misused company assets.

WPP chairman Roberto Quarta has now become executive chairman until the appointment of a new CEO.

Please login with linkedin to comment

Mark Read sorrell WPP

Latest News

QUT Business School Launches “Make it Real” Via BCM Group
  • Campaigns

QUT Business School Launches “Make it Real” Via BCM Group

Queensland University of Technology (QUT) Business School has launched a new brand platform, developed by BCM Group, built to encourage prospective students to upskill, invest in themselves, and nurture their inner entrepreneur.

Making A Name For Your Brand In A New Market: Tips For Launching A Campaign Globally
  • Opinion

Making A Name For Your Brand In A New Market: Tips For Launching A Campaign Globally

Jacqueline Gonzales [featured image] is the Head of Global Marketing at Squarespace. In this piece, she shares her best pieces of advice for launching a campaign globally. It’s estimated that we see between 6,000 to 10,000 ads every single day. In today’s digital landscape we’re constantly bombarded by so many different brand messages from every […]


by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Acast Announces New Podcast ‘The Elements’
  • Media

Acast Announces New Podcast ‘The Elements’

From the audio producer of The Teacher’s Pet comes The Elements, a new Acast Creator Network podcast hosted by Thredbo survivor Stuart Diver. The Elements is a  podcast that journeys into the heart of surviving a natural disaster and will be hosted and distributed by the creator-first podcast company Acast as part of the Acast Creator […]