Sir Martin Belittles WPP's Growth Institute

Martin Sorrell’s S4 Capital grew by double-digits in the first quarter in various key metrics. Organic revenue growth, for example, was up 35% overall and 26% in the Americas, where the firm generates 65% of its revenues.

As S4 noted in its Q1 announcement, the numbers were in line with expectations for the now bigger-than-a-peanut company (as Sorrell himself has described it) to double in size organically over three years.

Sorrell has another goal, as evidenced by his quote in the Q1 release — to continue to be an irritating burr under WPP’s saddle.

“Speed in all sense of the word is becoming a crucial competitive advantage and differentiator, and we don’t have to set up an institute to learn that. We just listen.”

The institute crack was a reference to the so-named Institute For Real Growth that was unveiled earlier in the week. WPP is a cofounder and orchestrated the Institute’s inaugural event in New York.



It was a zinger all right. But I wonder to what end? Why continue to jab at a company in which you’re a sizeable shareholder?

WPP was the intended target, but it was also a slap at Facebook and Google (among others) that are also backing the institute. Two media industry giants that many of S4’s clients do sizeable business with.

Buy hey, Martin, don’t let me stop you. You’ve always been a whiz at helping journos generate copy and on behalf of the entire profession, I thank you.


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