NEW YORK: WPP group chairman Martin Sorrell, who controls most of
the world's PR interests, admitted last week at the UBS Warburg Media
Week conference that his "specialization (into PR) didn't work."
Sorrell added that he saw no indications of an upturn in the marketing
services industry. He told PRWeek that diversification into the PR
business hadn't sheltered his company from the recession: "People have
had such a terrible year, and PR and public affairs have been the most
Sorrell said all WPP divisions would be given a reprieve from 15%
operating margin targets he had expected for 2002, and was realistic
about recent losses: "We had ten years of unprecedented growth. There
had to be some correction in 2001."
WPP owns agencies Burson-Marsteller, Hill & Knowlton, Cohn & Wolfe,
Ogilvy, and boutiques such as Robinson, Lerer & Montgomery.