Edition, June 26, 2002, Page 1
WINNICK USES RUBENSTEIN
Gary Winnick, the embattled
Global Crossing founder, is using Rubenstein and Assocs.
to handle media relations. Many investors blame Winnick
for the downfall of the firm, which is under investigation
by the Securities and Exchange Commission and the FBI.
Winnick was a former
junk bond salesman at Drexel Burnham Lambert before he set
up GC in 1997. Though Winnick is credited with building
the high-tech communications network, The Wall Street
Journal said he has come to embody the excesses of the
fallen telecommunications industry.
Marcia Horowitz, executive
VP at RA, represents Winnick.
MYANMAR PAYS DCI $35K A MONTH
The Union of Myanmar, which is ruled by a ruthless military
junta, has retained Washington, D.C.-based DCI Assocs. to
improve its relationship with the U.S. DCI is to brief members
of the Bush Administration and Congress that the former
Burma is now committed to democracy and human rights. It
also wants to be considered a foot soldier in President
Bush's so-called "war on terror." DCI received
a $100,000 retainer from Myanmar in early April, which will
cover work through July 15. It will then bill Myanmar $35K
DCI has been retained by Myanmar's State Peace & Development
SW FIGHTS 'CORPORATE PATRIOT'
The Stanley Works, which wants to cut its U.S. tax bill
by $30 million a year by reincorporating in Bermuda, has
hired Williams & Jensen to lobby against the "Corporate
Patriot Enforcement Act."
That bill, introduced by Rep. Richard Neal (D-Mass.), would
amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to prevent corporations
from avoiding U.S. income tax by reincorporating in a foreign
The 159-year-old New Britain, Conn., toolmaker justifies
its reincorporation move in the name of corporate flexibility.
Weber Shandwick handles SW.
Edelman PR Worldwide
has established Edelman Corporate Governance Advisors with
former Securities and Exchange Commission chairman Richard
Breeden. Its aim is to help companies build investor confidence
through effective communications.
ORBIS DENIED INJUNCTION VS.
New York Supreme Court Justice Ira Gammerman has denied
Orbis Broadcast Group's motion for a preliminary injunction
against PR Newswire, MultiVu and six staffers including
MV president Tim Bahr. He also "vacated" a limited
"temporary restraining order."
Orbis filed a suit May 6 contending that PRN breached
a contract when it hired Bahr, who was president of OBG's
broadcast group, and others to run MultiVu, a company formed
to provide VNRs and a range of electronic publicity tools.
Gammerman said it appears that Orbis "is trying to
bootstrap the confidentiality provision of the co-marketing
agreement to cover the absence of noncompete agreements
with the individual defendants who don't have one, or the
non-compete agreement with Bahr from which he was released."
An injunction would have prevented MultiVu from using what
OBG considers its trade secrets and confidential proprietary
information, such as customer lists.
Charles Morin, CEO of PRN, said: "It is not uncommon
for a company to use legal channels to slow down or thwart
a competitor's advances."
SEC PROBES OMNICOM
The Securities and Exchange Commission wants Omnicom to
provide details concerning the resignation of two "outsider"
directors from its board, and the firing of Arthur Andersen
as its auditor.
Omnicom has "voluntarily" provided the info
to the SEC staff about the auditor change to KPMG, and last
month's resignation of audit committee chairman Bob Callander
and the Jan. 28 departure of Richard Beattie. Omnicom, via
a statement, said it anticipated the SEC request following
the June 12 Wall Street Journal story outlining its
aggressive accounting techniques. The request is "not
unusual," said the communications conglomerate.
Omnicom has posted the resignation letters of Callander
and Beattie on its website. Callander's May 22 "letter"
to OMC chairman Bruce Crawford is one sentence: "Effective
immediately, I am submitting my resignation from the board
of Directors of the Omnicom Group, Inc." Callander,
a director for 10 years, had questioned whether he was properly
informed about the Seneca off-balance sheet entity that
houses OMC's Internet investments, according to the WSJ.
(continued on page 7)
Edition, June 26, 2002, Page 2
MEDIA CALLED 'FAIR, BALANCED'
The U.S. media are "fair
and balanced" in reporting on developments in the Middle
East, according to Alon Pinkas, Israel's consul general
in New York. Pinkas says there is more of a pro-Israel than
an anti-Israel tendency in the media since the Sept. 11
The CG thinks those who
detect an anti-Israel bias in the American media are reacting
on more of an emotional than substantive level. Those critics
just don't want to see any Palestinian spokesperson on the
airwaves, Pinkas told Ha'aretz. "They believe
the Israeli cause is right and just but then they see unpleasant
images from the field, and that generates dissonance,"
he added. Pinkas considers it nonsense to say that CNN or
ABC-TV News anchor Peter Jennings hate Israel, or that "The
New York Times is no more than a collection of self-hating
The 41-year-old Pinkas,
who was appointed by Ehud Barak, says it is undeniable that
some of the images of Israel are "hardly flattering."
For instance, "If Israel decides that it has to launch
a military campaign against terrorism, it has to take into
account that it won't come across well in the media. Entering
Jenin is not figure skating. A military operation never
looks good, especially when you are ten times stronger than
the Palestinians," he said.
shows a tank crushing a car, you won't be able to explain
that the car was threatening the tank. Anyone who thinks
that can be done doesn't understand advocacy," he said.
Israel's New York Consulate
keeps close tabs on the Times' editorial and op-ed
pieces. Pinkas said 60 percent of those pieces were pro-Israel
or balanced, while the remainder were pro-Palestinian or
tilted that way since Sept. 11.
Pinkas, who is a frequent guest of U.S. news programs, "Israel's
premier warrior in the battle for public opinion in the
He usually squares off
against Abdel Rahman, the Palestinian Authority representative
in the U.S.
DOLE RIDES TO TYCO RESCUE
Tyco International has
hired Bob Dole, the former Senate Majority Leader and Republican
Presidential candidate, as its lobbyist. As head of Bob
Dole Enterprises, the Kansan will advise Tyco on corporate
Interim Tyco CEO John
Fort has been trying to right the embattled $36 billion
company that is under investigation by the Securities and
Exchange Commission and Manhattan District Attorney's Office.
Both Moody's Investors
service and Fitch Ratings recently downgraded Tyco's credit
to junk bond status.
Fort took the helm following
the resignation earlier this month of Dennis Kozlowski who
was indicted on charges that he evaded New York City sales
taxes by shipping artwork that he purchased there to Tyco's
corporate headquarters in New Hampshire.
Dole remains special
counsel at Verner, Liipfert, Bernhard, McPherson and Hand.
STEWART URGED TO 'GO PUBLIC'
Martha Stewart's only
hope for saving her brand is to "go public" with
the truth about her alleged insider trading, says Peter
Montoya, publisher of Personal Branding Magazine.
He believes Stewart is making a costly mistake by listening
to her advisors, who are telling her to avoid the press
and "deny everything." Stewart is under investigation
on charges of insider trading in ImClone Systems, a troubled
squarely in front of the cameras, without a lawyer in sight,
and candidly speak the truth in plain English," says
Montoya, who has put together a "Survival Guide"
for the queen of taste. "Don't over-rehearse, don't
get defensive-just answer questions," he advises Stewart.
He said her denials will
only serve to "insult us. Look at the permanent cloud
over Bill Clinton and Richard Nixon. We hate cheats and
liars. And we never forgive them," said Montoya.
If she is guilty of insider
trading, Montoya said it will cost her potentially millions
in fines, and possibly trigger criminal charges, but it
will be far less than the potential loss of revenue that
her personal brand generates every year, and her status
as "America's Homemaker."
Susan Magrino Agency
does PR for Stewart.
70% OF PR PROS ARE UNHAPPY
Seventy percent of PR
people are "not at all" satisfied or are only
"somewhat" satisfied in their current positions,
and more than half (58%) plan to leave their current employer
within a year. That is a finding of a survey of 800 PR pros
conducted by Workinpr.com,
a Seattle-based PR recruiting and career site.
When asked why, 21% indicated
it was because of a lack of challenge.
"The fact that employees
are planning to leave within a year even in this uncertain
market is a bit of a surprise," said Renee Dunn, president/CEO
"It is obviously a good time for CEOs and VPs to check
in with their top performers."
Another trend from the
survey revealed 85% of employers would use freelancers instead
of hiring full-time PR pros.
(72%) of employers claim their company is not currently
hiring, and 37% do not project any headcount growth for
the next 6-12 months.
Many are freelancing,
perhaps not by choice. More than half (56%) of PR freelancers
have been freelancing for less than one year, and 75% of
free-lancers are currently seeking full-time employment,
while 51% claim that finding consistent employment is the
hardest aspect of freelance/consulting work.
Publicis Groupe shareholders
June 18 approved the $3 billion acquisition of Bcom3 Group,
parent company of Manning, Lee & Selvage, to create
the No. 4 communications giant. Closing date of the deal
has been put back to September from June 30 due to various
Edition, June 26, 2002, Page 3
IS 'THIS WEEK' ANCHOR
was named anchor of the ABC News Sunday morning program
who has been an analyst and correspondent with ABC News,
will start anchoring in September. He replaces San Donaldson
and Cokie Roberts, who will remain with ABC News.
anchor joined ABC News in 1997 after serving in the Clinton
Administration as the senior advisor to the president for
policy and strategy.
will continue to anchor his syndicated daily radio program,
"Live in America," and his webcast, "Sam
who writes a syndicated column, will continue to have an
on-air role. She is at work on a book, "Founding Mothers,"
which will be published early next year.
who has been a regular contributor to This Week since the
program premiered in 1981, will continue to be a panelist
on the broadcast.
was named executive producer of This Week, replacing Virginia
Mosely, who was named director of editorial projects for
CRAFT JOINS UPSIDE AS TOP
Lester Craft has joined San Francisco-based Upside
Magazine as editor-in-chief, suceeding Jerry Borrell,
Craft had been editor-in-chief of Line56 Magazine
and senior editorial executive at Cahners Business Information.
Upside, a high-tech business publication, is wholly
owned by MCG Capital Corp., a financial services company.
31, was promoted to editor-in-chief of London-based FHM's
U.S. edition, succeeding Ed
Needham, who was named managing editor of Rolling
Gramling was an associate editor of Sports Illustrated
for Kids' book division before joining FHM as deputy editor
previously night editor, was promoted to managing editor
of The Record of Bergen County, N.J.
was named managing editor/local news and business at The
St. Paul (Minn.) Pioneer Press, and Cathy
Straight was named managing editor/features and sports.
50, who started Slate.com's
"Today's Papers" column in 1997, died in a scuba-diving
accident on June 15 near his home in Los Angeles.
a columnist for The New York Daily News, was elected
president of the National Assn. of Hispanic Journalists
during the Association's annual convention in San Diego,
Gonzalez is one of the founders of NAHJ and co-founder
of Unity: Journalists of Color.
who is business writer for The Arizona Daily Star,
was voted in as VP for print; Art
Rascon, an anchor and reporter for KTRK-TV in Houston,
VP of broadcast; Javier
Aldape, publisher for La Estrella in Fort Worth,
financial officer, and San Jose Mercury News race and demographics
editor Anne Vasquez,
WILD SHOWS LINKED TO LOWER
A new study by researchers at Iowa State Univ. involving
324 TV viewers found sexually explicit and violent programming
can overwhelm the effectiveness of commercials.
Those watching programs such as "Miracle Pets"
or "Candid Camera" remembered more commercials
than those watching wrestling or "Howard Stern."
Viewers watching neutral programs were able to remember
3.15 commercials, while those watching violent shows remembered
2.09 ads and those watching programs with sexual content
remembered 1.72 ads.
The participants were given a surprise quiz immediate
after the shows.
Critics called the study too small and unfair. The criticism
was directed mostly at the format, in which the same nine
commercials, including ads for laundry detergent and cereal,
were aired with all of the programs.
The Asian Wall Street
Journal Weekly will publish its last issue on July 1.
a one-day, media-only event to showcase retailers' predictions
for the hottest Holiday toys and games, has been scheduled
for Oct. 22 at the Metropolitan Pavilion in New York.
Hill and Knowlton, Los Angeles, which is handling this
year's event, is inviting reporters to register by sending
an e-mail to [email protected].
pulled a promotional poster from more than 3,000
retail outlets over concerns the picture of drinks side
by side might inappropriately recall the Sept. 11 attacks.
Starbucks pulled the posters after being contacted by a
reporter for The New York Post, who was following
up on a reader's complaint.
Hearst Corp. is starting
a TV channel in Argentina and Mexico on July 1, based on
its women's magazine Cosmopolitan.
has begun "Market Trends"-a new "Money"
section feature that will run every Monday. The new page
shows a graphic view of stock market and economic trends.
news continued on next page)
Edition, June 26, 2002, Page 4
MSNBC EXECS DEFEND MORE TALK
NBC News president Neal Shapiro said he is "very
comfortable" with MSNBC's move from straight news to
an opinion format.
"We're a newspaper in the morning and weekly newsmagazine
in the evening," Erik Sorenson, MSNBC's president,
said of the new format. "We're such a news-rich culture
and society right now; what consumers are demanding is analysis.
They want to know, `What does it mean?'"
MSNBC is replacing four hours of daytime news programming
with two two-hour blocks of opinion, one from New York radio
hosts Ron Kuby, a liberal, and Curtis Sliwa, a conservative;
the other from former California Democratic party leader
Bill Press, who was recently let go from CNN's "Crossfire,"
and former Republican presidential candidate Pat Buchanan,
also formerly of Crossfire. Both shows will include news
In the evening, liberal Phil Donahue is returning to TV
and Chris Matthews' "Hardball," which has diverse
opinions, is getting a primetime slot.
Jerry Nachman, former editor of The New York Post
and MSNBC's new editor-in-chief, will also get an hour that
will look at stories behind the day's news.
"I understand why some people are upset," Shapiro
told The Los Angeles Times, but added that they haven't
seen how the moves will be executed.
"We are going to be the most aggressive, hard-charging
news operation on cable," he said, and some days the
commentators won't get on the air because there is so much
"But as we all know," Shapiro added, "in
the news cycle there are hours when nothing's happening.
Rather than stretching reporters to say the same things
over and over and over again-another criticism of cable
news-why not inject a little more analysis and opinion?
But until people actually see it, they fear it's going to
be nothing but a screaming fest" he told the Times.
PULITZER PRIZES DON'T WIN
Winning a Pulitzer Prize brings respect to a newspaper
but not readers, according to a study made by a Houston-based
syndicated media ratings service that provides trend data
on market penetration and market share.
The Media Audit reached this conclusion after examining
a list of 18 cities with daily newspapers that won at least
four Pulitzers during the 1990s.
"Even in New York where The New York Times,
Wall Street Journal, and Newsday win Pulitzers
every year, the percentage of adults who read a daily newspaper
on an average weekday declined from 64.8% in 1997 to 58.7%
in 2001," said Bob Jordan, co-chairman of International
Demographics, a 31-year-old research firm which publishes
Only two of the 18, Detroit and Des Moines, had an increase
(between 1997 and 2001) in the percentage of adults who
read a daily paper on an average weekday.
However, the Detroit and Des Moines surveys for 2001 were
conducted after 9/11, and the readership levels in many
markets were no doubt affected by those events, the research
firm said in its report.
MAGAZINE FOR GRANDPARENTS
The first issue of Get Up & Go, a new magazine
for grandparents, has been published by United Parenting
Publications, Carrollton, Tex., a division of Trader Publishing,
which publishes 27 monthly parenting titles.
The magazine's editorial focus will be on parenting issues
and travel destinations.
The magazine, which will be published three times per
year, is distributed through local grocery stores, bookstores,
travel agencies and other retail outlets in 12 of United's
The next issue will be published in October.
Bill Lindsay is editor-in-chief at 617/522-1515; e-mail:
HEALTH EXPERT TO START A NEWSLETTER
Phillips Health, Potomac, Md., is starting a monthly health
newsletter with Patrick Holford, who is an authority on
nutrition and new approaches to health and well-being.
The new publication, Patrick Holford's Wellness Advisor
will be complemented by a new website (www.holfordhealth.com).
Bob Kroening, managing editor of the newsletter, is based
in Potomac at 301/340-7788 ext. 1091.
COWBOYS & INDIANS LASSOS
Judith Price, the former owner and publisher of Avenue
Magazine, a popular lifestyle magazine for people who
live in New York, has joined Cowboys & Indians Magazine
to oversee circulation sales and provide direction for key
national ad accounts.
The Houston-based magazine, which has a paid circulation
of 100,000, is read by Western home, ranch, and horse owners
in major markets of Texas, Colorado, Arizona and California.
C&I covers a range of lifestyle topics: art,
home interiors, travel, fashion and Western film.
MAGAZINE LISTS HISPANIC-OWNED
Hispanic Business, based in Santa Barbara, Calif.,
ranks the 500 largest Hispanic-owned companies in the U.S.
in its June issue.
The rankings can also be viewed online at www.HispanicBusiness.com.
The June issue also marks the debut of the magazine's
new layout and several new editorial sections, including
"TechPulse" (technology news/reviews), "LegalEase"
(practical legal advice for businesses), "The Informant"
(news, trends, and numbers in the U.S. Hispanic economy),
and "ProActive" (career news and workforce trends).
Edition, June 26, 2002, Page 7
SEC PROBES OMNICOM
from page 1)
Jan. 28 letter cited "increasing demands on my time
as Vice Chairman of the Board of Overseers and Managers
of Memorial Sloan-Ketting Cancer Center and Chairman of
the Board of Managers of Memorial Hospital for Cancer and
Allied Diseases" as reasons for leaving the OMC board.
also charged with "artificially inflating" its
stock price by making a "series of material misrepresentations
to the market," according to a class action suit filed
by Milberg Weiss Bershad Hynes & Lerach. CEO John Wren,
Chairman Bruce Crawford, CFO Randy Weisenburger and Senior
VP/Controller Philip Angelastro are named as defendants
in the suit filed in the U.S. District Court, Southern District
of New York.
Weisenburger of Omnicom has the same title and appears to
perform the same duties as Sean Orr, executive VP and chief
financial officer of Interpublic, there is no information
about Weisenburger's stock holdings, salary, etc., in OMC
copious material about Orr's stock holdings, salary, etc.,
in IPG materials.
in an e-mail to the O'Dwyer website, said SEC rules only
require that the "five highest paid executive officers
of a company" must provide their stock holdings, options,
salary, etc., and he "does not qualify as either."
CFO, who acts as chief spokesperson for OMC in conference
calls with security analysts, a role also performed for
IPG by Orr, acknowledged a new SEC filing showing he purchased
20,000 shares of OMC on June 13 at $55.10 a share.
purchased the same amount of shares at the same price on
the same day. The blocks of stock cost about $1 million
by Bear Stearns & Co. on June 18 said "the issues
about Omnicom that have been in the paper (have) dampened
the valuations of the entire group."
been trading in the early $90's in May. The steep decline
touched off at least nine class-action stockholder lawsuits
claiming that corporate officers have been selling the stock
based on inside information.
have sold $72 million in OMC stock in the past two years.
in the past ten years, have purchased company shares on
the open market on only three occasions, according to the
Washington Service, which tracks insider activity.
told WS that he had purchased some OMC shares in 1998. He
told the O'Dwyer website that he purchased 20,000 shares
in 1998 and also has acquired the maximum allowable number
of shares each year via the company's Employee Stock Purchase
e-mail to provide the total number of OMC shares he owns
or has options on, he said the total is between 50,000 and
designated as a "non-executive" officer of OMC,
Weisenburger is spared doing the detailed reporting of remuneration
required of executive officers.
Salary & Bonus of $1M in 2001
is deemed by IPG to be an executive officer, reported his
annual salary is $600,000 (contract effective until May
31, 2004); was paid a bonus of $400,000 in 2001; received
$367,500 under the Long Term Incentive Plan; owns 41,394
shares of stock and has options on 16,800 other shares,
and received options on 48,000 shares Jan. 1, 2001, at the
price of $40.46 which expire in 2011.
future payouts to Orr under the long-term plan range from
$240,000 (threshold) to $1.38 million (target) and $2.1M
If Orr dies
while employed by IPG, $165,000 a year will be paid to his
beneficiaries for 15 years after his death.
If he retires
or resigns on or after his 55th birthday, he will be paid
benefits for 15 years ranging from $115,500 to $165,000
a year, depending upon the year he leaves IPG.
IPRA QUITS GLOBAL
PR Assn., which has 900 members in about 90 countries, has
withdrawn from the Global Alliance for PR and Communications
Management that was formed at the 2000 PRSA conference in
one of the founding members and took part in all the exploratory
meetings, said Jim Holt, CEO of IPRA.
he said IPRA favors the Alliance as a group of national
PR associations cooperating on an informal basis.
Alliance has now announced it will incorporate itself as
an organization with its own structure, IPRA can no longer
support it, said Holt in an e-mail he sent June 18 to organizers
of the Alliance.
Such a move,
he wrote, can cause a draining of the finances of the members
or lead to "a dependence on those associations that
have the resources."
be a "consequent destruction of the principles of inclusion
and equality such as can already be detected in the proposed
constitution," he wrote.
has attracted about 24 groups from among the more than 80
national PR organizations worldwide.
Signing a New Code
he said, have already agreed to abide by IPRA's own "Code
of Athens," which he said is based on the Charter of
the United Nations, with which IPRA has consultative status.
have to be a "full consultative process and vote of
all IPRA members" for them to sign a new code, said
see little benefit to our members in taking this step,"
Joann Killeen, president of PRSA, went to a meeting of the
Alliance in South Africa March 1-3 that drew representatives
of over a dozen PR groups.
Edition, June 26, 2002, Page 8
near-collapse of Omnicom's stock price following the June
12 Wall Street Journal article continues to
dominate news of the ad/PR world.
The decline from $93
to the low $50's wiped out $8 billion of OMC's $18B in equity
and touched off at least nine class-action stockholder suits.
The suits charge that insiders have been improperly selling
the stock in the "class period," which is designated
from April 25, 2000 to June 22, 2002. According to Yahoo!'s
tabulation, 841,439 shares worth $72 million have been sold
by 15 insiders since May 31, 2000, at an average of $85
Keith Reinhard, CEO of
DDB, sold 313,450 shares for $27.4M after exercising options
that cost him $6M. Alan Rosenshine, CEO of BBDO, sold 242,000
shares for $21.3M, exercising options that cost him $1.8M.
The Washington Service,
which also tracks insider data at the SEC, said OMC executives
have purchased stock of their company on the open market
only three times in the past ten years.
While Interpublic CEO
John Dooner got options on 100,000 IPG shares at $40.46
in 2001, OMC CEO John Wren got options on two million OMC
shares at $79.50 in 2001.
Wren and OMC CFO Randy
Weisenburger purchased 20,000 shares each at $55.10 on June
Analysts following OMC generally
rallied to the defense of the conglomerates.
Merrill Lynch's Lauren
Fine gave OMC a "strong buy near and longterm"
on June 18. She had downgraded OMC to a "buy"
on May 30 and had written negatively about the entire ad
sector on the same day. But she reversed herself a week
Fine's restored rating
of OMC failed to halt the decline in the stock. She had
written on May 30 that investors in the $850 million in
zero-coupon "LYONS" convertible bonds would not
want their money back as long as OMC's stock price was above
$84. This offering was managed by ML.
With OMC now trading in
the $50's, we attempted to ask her if this meant investors
would now want their money back. However, she has not returned
phone calls. We asked two PR pros in the ML PR department
the same question and they hung up on us.
The LYONS are a "pure
play" in that they pay no interest. Investors can only
hope that OMC's price rises substantially above $110 a share.
ML also owns 739,000 shares of OMC.
A report by Fine on June
19 said that ML had "hosted a dinner with OMC management"
focusing on OMC's off-loading its dot-com investments and
how OMC calculates internal growth vs. growth by acquisition.
Fine is concerned that
the WSJ is "not done" with OMC and adds: "While
we know of no new issues that could be reviewed, they (WSJ)
appear to be having fun producing innuendo rather than insight."
Wren told analysts at
the June 12 conference, in reference to the WSJ story, that,
"There's been nothing fundamentally that happened here.
Nothing whatsoever, other than the WSJ article." In
other words, the WSJ story constitutes "nothing."
Odds are that lenders
will seek their money back on the $850M LYONS and the $900M
zero-coupon bonds floated by J.P. Morgan Securities in March
2002. OMC would have to raise the $1.75B via other sources
if both zero-coupon bonds are "put" back to OMC.
Analysts say OMC will have to pay the money back or add
a "sweetener" such as interest payments to make
the investors happy.
New York Times,
in the first week and more after June 12, barely touched
on OMC's problems. Ad columnist Stuart Elliott wrote
for a late edition June 13 that OMC stock had experienced
its "biggest one-day fall since the company was formed
in 1986" and that Interpublic and WPP were also down.
The Times and other media may now be preparing their
own reports on what could be one of the biggest ad stories
of all time-the reversal of the consolidation trend.
lengthy article on OMC in Fortune on Sept. 17, 2001
by Patricia Sellers said the company once owned 20 dot-coms
worth $3.5 billion in the stock market and that Wren at
that time was "getting all the net assets off OMC's
books by shoveling them into a private holding company called
Seneca." Whether OMC properly pulled out of its dot-com
investments is a matter that is hotly disputed. Wren, in
the June 12 teleconference, said OMC "never swept anything
over the side." The text of the 50- minute conference
with analysts is on the OMC website: www.omnicomgroup.com.
June 12 to June 24, 855 messages about OMC were posted on
the Yahoo! bulletin board including 251 on June 12.
Previous message traffic was three to six a day. Some of
the participants are employees worried about OMC stock in
their 401K plans. There is grousing that some of the top
executives are getting unimaginably rich while those in
the lower rungs are losing their jobs or otherwise getting
the short end of the stick. The big names like BBDO and
DDB are doing O.K. but the boutiques are having a rough
time, said one posting.
recent CBS-TV report portrayed the Hamptons on Long Island
as a decadent, pricey resort area but failed to mention
family-oriented Westhampton. Merchants advertise one-bedroom
apartments for as little as $3,000 a month (631/288-2248).