WPP tipped for deal with Dewe Rogerson

Communications giant WPP is understood to be in advanced negotiations with financial PR and advertising group Dewe Rogerson. The two have been in talks since late last year, insiders say. The main stumbling block seems to be the asking price, which some observers put at pounds 15 million to pounds 25 million.

Communications giant WPP is understood to be in advanced

negotiations with financial PR and advertising group Dewe Rogerson. The

two have been in talks since late last year, insiders say. The main

stumbling block seems to be the asking price, which some observers put

at pounds 15 million to pounds 25 million.



WPP, led by chief executive Martin Sorrell, already owns Hill and

Knowlton and Ogilvy Adams and Rinehart but has no specialist financial

PR agency.



Dewe Rogerson is jointly owned by group chairman Roddy Dewe, chief

executive Nico Rogerson, executive chairman Tony Carlisle and deputy

chief executive John de Uphaugh. Dewe and de Uphaugh, both approaching

retirement age, are widely believed to be eager to sell.



Carlisle refused to confirm or deny speculation that he and the other

three owners were in talks with WPP.



’I’ve known Martin (Sorrell) for 12 years. We’re always talking and in

the past it’s well known that he has been after us. I can’t take you any

further than that,’ he said.



WPP also declined to comment on ’market rumour’. However, the media

giant is well known for its aggressive acquisitions policy and recently

refused to rule out a full bid for media buyer CIA.



Dewe Rogerson’s main offices are in London, New York and Hong Kong. Dewe

Rogerson’s specialist advertising and broadcast teams also make it an

attractive target for WPP. Carlisle said: ’If you’re asking me to

establish the logic I could do so very easily.’



WPP’s interim results show that its PR revenue grew by 8.3 per cent and

accounted for six per cent of group revenue at pounds 49.9 million. Hill

and Knowlton’s revenue grew by 8.4 per cent and Ogilvy Adams and

Rinehart’s by 7.5 per cent.



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