Sir Martin Sorrell is in India again, and as he does in his visits here, he is taking stock of the India operations and meeting the clients here. Addressing a media briefing on July 18, 2007, Sorrell spoke on his views on the developments and growth in the India market and what he saw as the way forward for WPP.
Sorrell expressed that where WPP had seen 20 per cent growth in India in the last year, it had seen 30 per cent growth in China. He, however, believed that the advertising revenues in comparison to the potential that the market held made India an under-advertised and under-branded market. He said, “If you look at the way the Indian companies are growing, there is so much that is waiting to happen in this market.”
He further said that WPP had two broad areas of work chalked out for India --- one is the regional expansion. “India has 27 states and not just Mumbai and Delhi, so we have to work more on the geographical expansion,” he added, quoting the Genesis acquisition last year as a move in this direction. He also pointed out newer markets in Asia like Pakistan, Indonesia and Vietnam that have been growing fast too.
The second area that he identified as a focus point was the growth of new technology. Speaking on the expansion that he saw on this count in markets like India and China, he explained, “Mobile is perhaps driving the growth in India and China today, and I don’t think people in the West still don’t fully understand these numbers.”
Where he said that acquisition was a route for growth, in markets like China, WPP was expecting more from organic growth, which he quoted in the region of $100 million and said to be better than WPP’s next best competitor in the market.
At the same time, Sorrell admitted to the gaps that were there in markets between their targets and market figures. He said, “We know these gaps and we are not complacent. We are driving this growth.”
He said that five years from now, he would like to see WPP more in the digital and new media areas than today. He said, “We are already reaching the 25 per cent mark, but that has to grow.” He also said that he would like to see WPP to more in markets like Asia, Latin America, Africa and the Middle East.