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WPP cheered the City yesterday as its half-year profits surged almost 20 per cent to £429m and the advertising giant promised to keep raising the dividend.

The Investment column: Sorrell works miracles at WPP

Martin Sorrell may have created WPP's problems but you can't deny he has done an impressive job digging the advertising and PR group back out of its self-inflicted hole. Pre-tax profits for 1996 were pounds 153.3m compared with under pounds 8m in 1992. Operating profits have grown over that period from 5.9 per cent to 10.8 per cent. Net debt has fallen by two- thirds from pounds 437m to pounds 145m and could be wiped out completely within two years.

Sorrell comes closer to scooping pounds 30m pay bonanza

Martin Sorrell looks increasingly likely to scoop a maximum payout of more than pounds 30m from a controversial remuneration package that was sold to shareholders as almost impossible to achieve 18 months ago.

Sorrell weeks from pounds 3.6m share bonanza

Martin Sorrell, the chief executive of advertising giant WPP, is just weeks away from a multi-million pound payout under the controversial incentive scheme established earlier this year. If the WPP share price remains above 230p until March, Mr Sorrell will be awarded shares worth at least pounds 3.6m.

A career built on chutzpah and charm

BOOK REVIEW; Greenfinger: The Rise of Michael Green and Carlton Communications by Raymond Snoddy, Faber & Faber, pounds 17.50

American upheavals tarnish S&N

The Investment Column

pounds 25m Sorrell share option jackpot within reach at WPP

Martin Sorrell, head of WPP and potentially the highest paid advertising executive in Britain, last night stood on the verge of triggering the second tranche of a controversial share incentive scheme worth up to pounds 25m.

Fourth year of growth for WPP

Buoyed by the fourth straight year of improving profits, shares in the advertising giant WPP climbed within 50p of activating a controversial performance bonus for its chief executive, Martin Sorrell, writes Mathew Horsman.

Sorrell proves his worth

INVESTMENT COLUMN

Smiths remains pick of the bunch

Investment Column

Abbott Mead untarnished

THE INVESTMENT COLUMN

Profits climb at WPP

WPP, the advertising and marketing services company, pleased the market with interim figures at the top end of analysts' estimates, sending shares up 3.5p to 143.5p yesterday.

Shareholders approve Sorrell package

Shareholders of WPP, the advertising company, yesterday approved what may be the richest remuneration package of any UK publicly-quoted company, voting in favour by a margin of three to one.

WPP confident of backing for Sorrell package

WPP, the advertising company, is "very confident" it has secured a significant majority of votes in favour of its revised remuneration package for Martin Sorrell, its chief executive.

WPP reaches Sorrell deal

WPP, the advertising company, last night reached a compromise deal with dissenting shareholders over a controversial package for its chief executive, Martin Sorrell.

WPP scrambles to adjust Sorrell's pay plan

WPP, the advertising company, was last night scrambling to adjust the controversial pounds 30m pay scheme for its chief executive, Martin Sorrell, in a bid to win broad support from increasingly hostile institutions.
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