David Blecken
Sep 9, 2008

Sorrell predicts strong Asia over next 12 months

ASIA-PACIFIC - Asia is set to continue to grow significantly in the coming year despite a more pronounced global slowdown.

Sorrell predicts strong Asia over next 12 months
So says Sir Martin Sorrell (pictured) in an interview with Media in which the WPP chief executive conceded that the Chinese economy would inevitably be affected by the inauguration of a new US president who would have the challenge of dealing with trade and budget deficits, as well as a strengthened dollar against the pound and inflation.

But he noted that although things "will be tough for the next 12 months", Asia would not be as badly affected as the West.

"Even if growth slows in China or India, it’ll still be seven to nine per cent," he said. "We would give our eye teeth for that in Western Europe in the face of the subprime crisis, the insurance and online crisis, and the associated impact on banks, financial institutions and the real world."

Looking ahead to 2010, he said he foresaw a bullish year globally, taking note of Asia the Asian Games in Guangzhou, the World Expo in Shanghai, the Vancouver Winter Olympics, the World Cup in South Africa and the US mid-term congressional election.

Sorrell predicted that the coming year would see the accelerated development of new media companies, particularly in fast-growing markets such as Asia. But he noted that while the mobile medium would continue to increase in penetration and importance, "we will not see mobile advertising grow as fast as we would like."

Citing Omnicom and Google as the most prominent threat to WPP, Sorrell added that the network would place emphasis on geographic and technological growth.

Sorrell’s comments will be carried in full in the October 2 issue of Media.


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