Three decades after Martin Sorrell made a wire shopping basket the world's largest advertising company, he will find out if he still has the magic touch.
The former WPP Plc Chief Executive Officer inspected a listed company just six weeks after his sudden withdrawal from WPP. S4 Capital Ltd., a largely Sorrell-funded vehicle, is being acquired by Derriston Capital Plc, an investment firm that raised $ 2.3 million (US $ 3 million) as part of the IPO at the end of 201
"S4 Capital is one Company, the goal is to build a growth-oriented multinational communications services business, "said Sorrell, 73, in a statement. "There are significant opportunities for the development of technology, data and content, and I look forward to making this possible."
The announcement is the answer to speculation about what Sorrell was planning after investigating the alleged case personal misconduct and misuse of corporate assets was excluded from the advertising group. His return after a brief pause is closely watched by WPP and its peers, which have been pressured in recent years by both Internet giants such as Google Inc. and Facebook Inc. of Alphabet Inc., but have also seen marketing marketing business have from people like Accenture Plc.
Sorrell resigned last month from London-based WPP. The Shell company, which he integrated into a global network of more than 400 agencies with 200,000 employees, did not make the allegations against him public. Sorrell has denied any wrongdoing.
S4 has recently amassed £ 51 million, said Derriston, of which Sorrell contributed £ 40 million, the remainder from institutional and other investors. In addition, several S4 institutional investors have stated that they are prepared to provide more than £ 150 million in additional funding to support the Company's acquisition plans.
Sorrell has not said where he intends However, his departure from WPP has opened the ad campaign to reorganize for various businesses and attract potential customers as the strategy shifts.
Kantar, the data management unit of WPP, which gives companies insight into consumer trends, is the most obvious candidate available, Liberum analyst Ian Whittaker said last month. Sorrell was a strong proponent of maintaining the division during the WPP, although the price – which Whittaker estimated at £ 3.5 billion – is much higher than S4's initial purse.
Sorrell has even received non-binding financial letters of support though nothing is publicly known about the allegations that caused his downfall. WPP completed the investigation, but its decision to disclose more about the probe was criticized by critics, including Guy Jubb, a corporate governance expert, and former UK business secretary Vince Cable. Jubb, a frequent critic of the WPP government, said it left a "cloud of mistrust".
Sorrell, a multi-year personality during his tenure at WPP, attended Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's wedding this month and is due to appear on the main stage of the Cannes Lions ad-industry festival next month.
At a Techonomy conference in New York, Sorrell said he did not voluntarily or involuntarily retire, describing himself as "extracted" by WPP, calling a "legacy" company with various "warts and problems." In January, after a year of no business, Derriston announced a change in strategy, saying that it is now seeking acquisitions within all technology and other high-growth sectors focusing only on medical technology  [ Updates to add a comment on Kantar in the eighth paragraph. )