Sorrell closes in on victory against WPP in battle for Dutch agency MediaMonks

By Eirik Solheim via Wikimedia Commons

Sir Martin Sorrell, the ad guru, is close to revealing that he has been able to beat WPP, his former employer, in the bid for MediaMonks, a Dutch digital agency.

The sources who are close to the negotiations said that S4 Capital, the new marketing venture of Sorrell, could announce that he had acquired the company for €300 million (£266 million) as early as tomorrow morning.

The said deal is likely to be made up from the cash that was raised from investors and a significant share of equity in S4 Capital which Sorrell has been offering to the executives of MediaMonks.

It is perceived that some rival bidders which include Accenture already dropped out of the bid for MediaMonks with offers that were approximately 20 percent lower as compared to the sum that Sorrell is claimed to have paid.

A tough battle has broken out during the past weeks for MediaMonks, as WPP released a warning for Sorrell that he could lose up to £20 million in share awards if S4, his new firm, continued to pursue its interest in the company.

The lawyers of WPP said that Sorrell risked breaching a confidentiality agreement that he signed when he suddenly left the company in April if he made a bid for MediaMonks.

The company claimed that Sorrell had been a major part in the talks with MediaMonks about a deal in 2017 while he was still serving as the chief executive of WPP.

The failure of the FTSE 100 advertising giant to win the said bid could have investors question why Sorrell was not required to sign a non-compete agreement when he left the company, which would have stopped him from going up against WPP in the marketing sector.

Sorrell, while talking at Cannes Lions in June, claimed that he was not interested in directly competing with WPP. He even described S4 Capital as a “peanut.”

He added: “But it does occur to me that some people have peanut allergies.”

WPP refused to comment regarding the matter. A representative for Sir Martin Sorrell was reached out to issue a comment but has not answered back.