'Profit Next Year,' Promises Interpublic's Roth

05 December 2007

NEW YORK: As Lewis Carroll's White Queen told Alice in Through the Looking-Glass: "The rule is, jam to-morrow and jam yesterday - but never jam today."

She was not referring to the ongoing travails of Interpublic Group, whose chairman/ceo Michael J Roth assured attendees at the annual UBS Global Media Conference in Manhattan that agency network Lowe Worldwide and media multinationals Initiative and Universal McCann are expected to become fully profitable in 2008.

And the bad news? IPG's profit-margin target for 2008 has been revised downward to between 8.5% and 9%.

Roth also assured his audience that that with less than thirty days before 2007 limps into history, IPG is "on track" to comply with Sarbanes Oxley by the end of the 2007 fiscal. "Nothing is indicating that we are not going to be able to do that," he said.

As to the related Securities and Exchange Commission probe into the company's financial practices: "It is my hope" that it will be resolved by early 2008. "There is nothing in our court that remains to be delivered" Roth assured. "And there are no new issues."

Data sourced from AdWeek (USA); additional content by WARC staff