Olympics and US elections boost WPP earnings

Worldwide revenues in the first six months amounted to £6.5 billion with the global advertising boosted by the Euro 2016 soccer tournament, the Rio Olympics and the upcoming US presidential election.

Sir Martin Sorrell, WPP chief executive, who had warned before the referendum of the likely impact of leaving the EU on the UK economy, told the BBC on Wednesday that he was pleased with the company’s post-Brexit performance, acknowledging that the UK had “perked up” in July after the vote. But he suggested that the economy would have been even stronger without the referendum and said that, overall, it was too early to tell how the vote would affect future growth.

Asked if he wanted Brexit negotiations to start as soon as possible, Sir Martin said, “Basically, yes. What business wants is things resolved as quickly as possible, but practically, that’s pretty impossible. “We’ve outsourced trade negotiations for the last 10 years or so, so building an organisation that can negotiate all these trade agreements is a very big task and will take a long time.”