WPP’s shares dropped 8% amid rumours that Sir Christopher Lewinton, currently a board member at the advertising group, may be appointed chairman.

Lewinton yesterday announced he would quit as chairman of engineering firm TI Group, a post he had been expected to fill until 2002 at the earliest.

It is believed that he has been in discussions with WPP chief executive Sir Martin Sorrell, although nothing concrete has been announced.

It is thought that WPP’s leading shareholders are upset at the choice, following the fall in TI shares from 690.5p to 325p under Lewinton’s stewardship.

News source: The Times (London)