Sir Martin Sorrell labels Omnicom CFO exit 'bizarre'

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WPP chief executive hits out at the recent departure of Omnicom's chief financial officer, Randall Weisenburger

NEW YORK — Sir Martin Sorrell, the WPP chief executive, has hit out at the recent departure of Omnicom's chief financial officer, Randall Weisenburger, labelling the move "remarkable".
In an interview with Campaign US, the WPP boss said the recent departure of Weisenburger, who left after 16 years to return to private equity, was "remarkable" since the he was reportedly the subject of all the difficulties during the failed Omnicom and Publicis Groupe merger.

Sorrell said: "It’s quite remarkable that you’ve had this reorganisation at Publicis and that you’ve had this resignation of the CFO of Omnicom who was reportedly at the centre of who was going to be the CFO. So they break the deal and the CFO who was the subject of all of the difficulties exits. Bizarre. Maybe there’s another chapter to come."

The WPP chief executive, who has never hidden his disapproval of the near merger, also said: "It didn’t make any sense."

Sorrell also said that content and WPP’s online media planning and buying platform Xaxis were going to be the "game changers" over the next year, with the latter providing technology and data to compete against media owners such as Google’s DoubleClick and Facebook.

Globally, Sorrell pointed to China as the country to watch given the power of sites such as Alibaba.

He said: "We’re going to have to adapt our western models to some of these things we see happening in China. Alibaba is not a vertical like Google, Amazon or Facebook, it’s all of the above.

"It’s really interesting and don’t think we realise how powerful these companies are going to become… [Its] understanding of how we buy things is immensely powerful. That’s the leverage it has."

Watch full interview above and two-minute interview below about Mad Men vs Math Men.

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