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WPP in Talks With Russian Companies, CEO Sorrell Says

Jan. 27 (Bloomberg) -- WPP Plc is in talks with "one or two" Russian companies as the world’s biggest advertising company seeks to expand into new markets, Chief Executive Officer Martin Sorrell said, without giving details.

Russia is going to become “very powerful” as oil prices rise, Sorrell said in a Bloomberg Television interview from Davos, Switzerland today.

WPP is the biggest advertising company in Russia with about 25 percent market share, Sorrell said. The London-based company is interested in expanding markets including South Africa and Poland, he said. WPP said yesterday it bought 50 percent of Mindshare South Africa (Pty) Ltd.

“We see an eastward shift in Europe, just as we see a southwards, or a southeastwards shift in the world as a whole,” Sorrell said in the interview with Francine Lacqua on Bloomberg Television’s “Global Connection” program.

The global economy may expand between 4 percent and 5 percent this year, about the same pace as 2010, Sorrell said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Mark Lee in Hong Kong at wlee37@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Young-Sam Cho at ycho2@bloomberg.net

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