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Going Global Case Study

Case Title:

Perils of Going Global: WPP's Italian Imbroglio

Publication Year : 2006

Authors: Rupesh, Sumit Kumar Chaudhuri

Industry: Advertising


Case Code: GGL0029

Teaching Note: Not Available

Structured Assignment: Not Available

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Since its inception in 1985 under the stewardship of Sir Martin Sorrell, WPP, the world's second largest advertising conglomerate, has rapidly expanded through acquisitions and partnerships. It has 2000 offices in 106 countries and employs 100,000 people. However, its continuous expansion and globalisation under a centralised management structure led to a loss of control over the entire group. One such instance was the dismissal of the Italian country head, Marco Benatti, who was fired due to allegations of fraud and other financial discrepancies, and a subsequent investigation was launched in WPP's Italian arm.

Pedagogical Objectives:

  • To understand the growth strategies of WPP in the global advertising and marketing industry
  • To discuss the managerial problems in a rapidly expanding global company with a centralised management.


  • WPP: The Making of a Goliath
  • WPP's Italian Imbroglio

Keywords : Wire and plastic products; Advertising and marketing services; Global advertising companies; WPP's problems in Italy; Sir Martin Sorrell; Marco Benatti; Managing in Troubled Times Case Study; Mediaclub Italy; Grey Global; Management problems in global companies; Ogilvy & Mather; Specialised and interactive communication services; Investigations into WPP Italy

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