Sir Martin Sorrel

Founder and CEO WPP

Sir Martin Sorrell widely respected as a visionary in the global media industry, founded the world’s largest advertising and marketing services group WPP. Sir Martin advises several esteemed international business schools including Harvard and the London Business School, and is also a distinguished member of global advisory groups such as the World Economic Forum International Business

Sir Martin Sorrell is chief executive of WPP, one of the world’s leading communications and advertising companies and one of the UK’s most respected business voices.

After leaving his role as CFO of Saatchi & Saatchi (where he was sometimes referred to as ‘the third brother’), in 1985 Sorrell privately invested in Wire Plastic Products, a British wire shopping basket manufacturer, and joined it full-time as Chief Executive in 1986. He began to acquire ‘below-the-line’ advertising-related companies, purchasing eighteen in three years, including a much-talked about hostile takeover of J. Walter Thompson (the huge New York ad agency). Sorrell followed this in 1989 with another dramatic hostile $825 million buy of Ogilvy and Mather.Since 2000, WPP has also acquired two more integrated, global agency networks, Young & Rubicam Brands and Grey. WPP is regarded as the driving force for the period of consolidation which has been going on within the communications industry for the last ten to fifteen years.

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