Shandwick’s number two exec calls it quits

LONDON: Shandwick’s number-two officer, deputy chief executive Michael Murphy is leaving because he ’wants to become an entrepreneur again.’

LONDON: Shandwick’s number-two officer, deputy chief executive Michael Murphy is leaving because he ’wants to become an entrepreneur again.’

LONDON: Shandwick’s number-two officer, deputy chief executive

Michael Murphy is leaving because he ’wants to become an entrepreneur

again.’



Murphy confirmed last week that he will remain involved with the agency

until the end of the year, but exact details of his contract have not

been finished. However, he is understood to be investigating ’a number

of options involving VC funding’ to start ’a new group.’



Sources close to the situation do not believe that Murphy’s departure is

related to the recent resignation of Shandwick founder Lord Chadlington.

However, with Chadlington currently making a play for marketing

communications group Huntsworth (PRWeek, July 24), it is conceivable

that Murphy could reunite with his former boss if his VC plans fail to

materialize.



Larry Weber, head of Interpublic’s Allied Communications Group,

sympathized with Murphy’s plight. ’A number of entrepreneurs who join

large public companies get disenchanted,’ he said. ’We have to figure

out a system where entrepreneurs feel rewarded and motivated in their

job.’



While Murphy said that being part of the Shandwick family for more than

a decade was ’an honor’ and that he ’leave(s) with mixed emotions,’

sources claimed that he has also become frustrated with Shandwick’s

increasingly American focus - especially the lack of interest in

acquisitions outside the US. Weber admitted that given Shandwick’s

status as the top agency in a number of European markets, Interpublic’s

focus has recently been on the US, which accounts for 70% of all PR

income.



Murphy ran his own agency, Scotland-based PR Consultants, before selling

to Shandwick in 1989. Since then, he has risen to become an executive

board director alongside CEO Scott Meyer and COO Mary Jeffries. In

recent months, Murphy has been responsible for managing and implementing

the firm’s new ’matrix’ structure of global practices.



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