Breakfast Briefing, 7.20.2017: Omnicom, Publicis earnings; Advice for Uber's next CEO

Publicis' numbers rebounded in the second quarter, while Omnicom's PR segment had a down period in terms of revenue.

Omnicom Group’s public relations firms had a down second quarter. The holding company’s PR shops, which include FleishmanHillard, Ketchum, Porter Novelli, and Marina Maher Communications, saw a 0.3% drop in revenue in the period. The holding company’s overall revenue was down 2.4% in Q2, including a relatively flat performance, up 0.2%, in North America. Operating profit was up 0.7% in the quarter.

Meanwhile, MSLGroup parent Publicis Groupe returned to organic revenue growth (0.8%) in the second quarter, citing a "good performance" in North America, though revenue was only up 0.2% in the region. The holding company does not break out performance by individual business sectors, such as PR.

It's up to Travis Kalanick whether he returns to Uber as CEO or in a different role, said newly appointed Uber SVP of leadership and strategy Frances Frei at a Recode event on Wednesday night. She also pushed back on the idea that the CEO can change everything at a company, telling the website’s Kara Swisher, "I don’t believe in the savior CEO."

President Donald Trump dropped a stunner in an interview with The New York Times posted Wednesday evening: he would not have appointed Jeff Sessions as attorney general had he known the former Alabama senator would recuse himself from the Russia probe. Trump also touched on dismissed FBI Director James Comey and, of course, Hillary Clinton during the interview. Quote: "I don’t think we’re under investigation...I’m not under investigation. For what? I didn’t do anything wrong." Meanwhile, despite late-night talks, the Republican Senate healthcare bill is still dead.

Sen. John McCain’s (R-AZ) doctors said Wednesday night that the longtime legislator is fighting an aggressive brain tumor. Well wishes poured onto social media from political allies, former rivals, and others yesterday evening, including a touching tribute from his daughter, Meghan. A photo of young McCain, then a U.S. Navy fighter pilot, also began to go viral.

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