Finsbury offers line up as WPP talks collapse

Financial PR agency Finsbury has been approached by six more marketing services groups following the collapse of its acquisition talks with Sir Martin Sorrell's WPP.

Financial PR agency Finsbury has been approached by six more marketing services groups following the collapse of its acquisition talks with Sir Martin Sorrell's WPP.

The WPP deal is understood to have floundered over the length of the earnout period for senior Finsbury staff and the degree of autonomy they would be allowed within the Sorrell empire.

While Sorrell is thought to have been prepared to pay up to pounds 50 million, proposals from other groups are likely to fall below that mark.

Finsbury, which has been a frequent acquisition target in recent years, is understood to have received fresh proposals from Interpublic, Omnicom, Incepta, Chime Communications, investor relations specialist Thomson Financial and Mosaic, the Canadian holding company lacking a London financial PR presence. A figure of nearer pounds 20 million has been mooted in connection with Mosaic's offer.

PR Week understands that although the agency considers a sell-off to a major global group the best way to expand overseas, the option of remaining independent has not been ruled out.

Finsbury's major shareholders are founders Rupert Younger and Roland Rudd and partner James Murgatroyd, who joined from Financial Dynamics shortly after Finsbury's launch.

Takeover speculation had linked Sorrell to Brunswick founder and senior partner Alan Parker. Parker denied talks with WPP but is known to be prepared to consider selling if it would create a 'better business'.



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