Published: Mon, April 16, 2018
Economy | By

Martin Sorrell stands down as WPP CEO

Martin Sorrell stands down as WPP CEO

Sorrell is one of Britain's best known and highly paid businessmen, pocketing about £230m since 2010. (He is renowned for holding conversations while texting with clients and friends.) Today, WPP can be a global advertisements behemoth with 130,000 workers in 112 countries, and a industry valuation of approximately 2-2 billion pounds, or about £ 31 billion. He will be treated as having retired on leaving WPP, as detailed in the Directors' Compensation Policy.

Mark Read, chief executive of Wunderman and WPP Digital, and Andrew Scott, WPP corporate development director and chief operating officer for Europe, have been appointed as joint chief operating officers of WPP. He has denied the allegations.

However, by resigning, he is likely to be deemed a "good leaver" by WPP's board, meaning that the investigation against him will be concluded without the details being made public. A new generation of management, led by Mark Read and Andrew Scott (who have each been at WPP for approximately 20 years), are well qualified and experienced in the Board's opinion, to deal with the geographic and technological opportunities and challenges our industry faces.

Roberto Quarta, chairman of WPP, moves into the executive chairman slot until a replacement for Sorrell is announced.

WPP plc American Depositary Shares (NYSE:WPP) has received an average rating of "Hold" from the fifteen research firms that are presently covering the stock, MarketBeat reports.

Whoever takes over could find keeping such a sprawling empire together an nearly an impossible task: WPP employs more than 200,000 staff in 400 separate ad businesses in more than 3,000 offices in 112 countries.


The question now for his successor, WPP's investors and its tens of thousands of clients is whether the £15bn group can survive the departure of its founder and the dramatic changes the internet is bringing to the traditional world of advertising. For example, the Vice-owned creative agency Carrot is said to have fostered what many described as a hostile work environment for women.

WPP provided us with the following statement.

However, the firm has struggled in the previous year, with shares falling back from heights above £19 in February to less than £12 at the close of markets last Friday.

For the past 33 years, I have spent every single day thinking about the future of WPP.

WPP declined to comment on Saturday evening, while Sir Martin could not be reached for comment.

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