Sir Martin O’Sorrell

Once upon a time in Ireland, if you earned your living as a writer, you didn’t have to pay income tax. What a great way to encourage a creative culture, from the country that brought you Joyce, Behan, Yeats and Samuel Beckett. Now WPP is moving to Ireland to take advantage of the tax conditions.

Is the Irish government encouraging creative accounting as well? Of course it’s not so simple. WPP is a holding company with hundreds of entities serving a variety of distributed client contracts around the world. It is, on one level, a British ‘success story’.

As the Goverment launches its ‘Creative Britain’ campaign, it seems ironic that one of the major firms that capitalises on creative talent should be fleeing the country. I wonder if they’ll all fly Ryanair.

  • David Murray

    Isn’t linking WPP and ‘creativity’ a bit of a stretch?

  • Alastair Duncan

    Not really. Many WPP agencies employ at one level or another, creative people, some of whom are rather good. I do get the point though that being ‘big’ doesn’t give one a default position of being ‘better’ – it takes some effort, orchestration and care to keep producing the goods. That can be very stretching.

  • jim coleman

    good on him. this is the start of the exodus for companies of this size and nature. When Browns government puts in such punitive measures what do they expect?

    I’d like to hear him explain to all the WPP employees where that ‘saved’ £204m will be going…

  • Alastair Duncan

    There’s a rather nice pub in Baggot Street. Hopefully some of it will be going there.