IPG plans 10% staff cut by end of 2001

NEW YORK: Interpublic Group confirmed plans to cut 10% of its

workforce at the firm's second quarter results presentation on July


In the first half of 2001, IPG firms cut 2,200 executives from the


It hopes to meet its 10% target by the year's end.

However, Larry Weber, chairman and CEO of Advanced Marketing Services,

said the PR firms had 90% of their cuts behind them, estimating that the

firms under his aegis had already shed around 100 people.

The company, whose PR brands include Weber Shandwick Worldwide (now

incorporating BSMG) and Golin/Harris International also announced

disappointing PR revenues. While IPG's promotion, event and direct

marketing division saw 7% growth, contributing $380 million, PR

grew by just 1% with revenues at $153.9 million.

Weber admitted the firm's lackluster performance in the period and said:

"Weber Shandwick was heavily into technology. Clients have cut back but

they didn't leave. We're hoping they'll come back."

IPG chairman and CEO John Dooner warned the company's full-year results

would fall below expectations, leading Merrill Lynch to cut financial


Overall second quarter revenue decreased 4.3% to $1.7 billion,

while net income before one-time costs was $117.1 million in the


Dooner was candid in his press statement. "As a company, we did not

reduce costs as quickly and as deeply as needed," he admitted.

"Obviously, these results aren't acceptable."

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