Gideon Spanier
Sep 27, 2020

WPP chiefs buy more shares despite Covid second-wave jitters

Stock price underwent a temporary bounce as investors considered the move a vote of confidence.

Read: spent £482,000 to buy 85,000 shares
Read: spent £482,000 to buy 85,000 shares

WPP’s chief executive Mark Read and chief financial officer John Rogers have spent almost £1m on buying shares in the agency group after the stock hit a four-month low last week.

Shares in WPP underwent a temporary bounce, rising about 2% to 580p, after the company disclosed that Read had spent £482,000 to buy 85,000 shares and Rogers paid £441,000 to acquire 75,000 shares a day later.

WPP stock sank as low as 560p last Monday (Sept 21) – its lowest level since May – on fears that a second wave of coronavirus infections could harm the global economic recovery.

WPP’s shares started the year above £10 but fell as low as 483p during the worst of lockdown in early April.

The decision to buy shares by Read, chief executive since September 2018, and Rogers, who joined earlier this year, will be seen as a positive sign, given the tough times facing the agency sector.

Prior to this, Read had not bought shares since the week he became CEO.

Senior executives at WPP agreed temporary salary reductions for three months between April and June as revenues less pass-through costs plunged 15.1%.

The world’s biggest agency group by staff numbers also reduced headcount by 5,000 to about 100,000 by the end of June.

Since then, WPP said its revenue decline eased to 9.2% in July.

Publicis Groupe recently ended its salary reductions in the UK after five months.

It is understood that other groups, including Omnicom and Interpublic, have yet to make a decision on ending salary reductions at the holding company level.

Source:
Campaign UK

Related Articles

Just Published

5 hours ago

Forrester CMO pushes for tighter integration of ...

Marketers need to tighten up oversight over all the touchpoints in the buying journey, which has increased from 17 to 27 on average during the pandemic, according to Shirley Macbeth.

6 hours ago

Baby Shark doo doo doo doo doo. LG Styler doo doo ...

Smooth out doo doo doo doo doo. Bad smell doo doo doo doo doo. Shake it out doo doo doo doo doo. LG Styler! [Something is very wrong with Ad Nut.]

8 hours ago

IAS explains ad verification in manga style

A young automobile-company exec learns how to mitigate brand risk and ad fraud in a free download from the ad-verification company.

8 hours ago

L'Oreal opens omnichannel concept store in Shanghai

Designed with AKQA, the store has a livestreaming set, face-scanning technology and personalised shopping via WeChat integration, as well as a chance to ride a bike through the streets of Paris.