Sir Martin Sorrell sends a word of advice to his WPP successor Mark Read, encouraging teamwork


Sir Martin Sorrell sends a word of advice to his WPP successor Mark Read, encouraging teamwork

  • Sorrell, 73, emailed a message this weekend congratulating Mark Read
  • It was also addressed to Read’s senior colleague Andrew Scott, the COO
  • The email is understood to have advised Read and Scott to work closely together

Matt Oliver City Correspondent For The Daily Mail

Sir Martin Sorrell sent a note congratulating Mark Read, his successor at WPP, and dispensing words of advice.

Sorrell, 73, emailed a message this weekend in his capacity as WPP’s seventh-biggest shareholder to Read and his senior colleague Andrew Scott, the chief operating officer.

The email is understood to have advised Read and Scott –who had been earmarked to become joint chief executives after Sir Martin left the advertising group under an earlier succession plan – to work closely together as a pair.

Sir Martin Sorrell (pictured) sent a note congratulating Mark Read, his successor at WPP, and dispensing words of advice

Sir Martin Sorrell (pictured) sent a note congratulating Mark Read, his successor at WPP, and dispensing words of advice

Sir Martin Sorrell (pictured) sent a note congratulating Mark Read, his successor at WPP, and dispensing words of advice

In the note, the veteran ad man is understood to have branded the hunt for a boss to replace him, which has taken five months, ‘a complete waste of time’ because of the succession plan already in place.

Read and Scott have been running the company together after Sorrell’s abrupt departure. 

He left earlier this year while a misconduct probe was looking at claims he spent £300 of company money on a prostitute.

Sorrell strenuously denies the allegations and WPP has never disclosed details of the matter. 

Read’s pay has been capped at £7million – just 10per cent of the total £70.4million pocketed by Sorrell three years ago, a figure which sparked shareholder outrage.

Read will also receive less than a fifth of the total £200,000 paid in benefits to his former boss, in a sign WPP is tightening the purse strings.

He has pledged to restore the group to growth and improve its use of technology to tackle competition from Silicon Valley.

The 51-year-old father-of-two said: ‘What we will be focusing on is growth.

‘But we also need to look at our traditional strengths in creativity, ideas and innovation and combine them with new skills in data and technology.

‘Google, Facebook, Snap [parent company of messaging app Snapchat] and the rest of the technology companies are reshaping how our industry works, and that requires us to get new skills and demonstrate our relevance.

‘But clients still need independent advice.’

Sorrell was one of Britain’s best-paid bosses, earning more than £200million from 2013 to 2017. 

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