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WPPGY to Acquire Filmworks

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Ireland-based advertising major, WPP Group Plc. (WPPGY) announced yet another acquisition that is primarily aimed to strengthen the company’s position in the fast-growing and important markets and sectors worldwide.

The company’s wholly-owned subsidiary, GroupM signed agreements to acquire China-based entertainment marketing agency, Filmworks China. This leading agency generated roughly RMB 12 million in revenues and had gross assets worth RMB 11 million for the year ended December 31, 2011.   

Filmworks specializes in marketing of entertainment media properties, merchandise licensing, tie-in promotion, product placement and celebrity endorsements. This acquisition will enable the company to access Filmworks’ client base that includes some big names like Electronics Arts, DreamWorks, TCL Television, Li Ning and Yili Group.

Acquisitions have been WPPGY’s primary tools for expansion in new markets. In 2011, WPPGY made as many as 24 acquisitions in new markets, 32 in new media and 8 in consumer insight.

The current Zacks Consensus EPS Estimates for WPP plc are $5.80 and $6.23 for years 2012 and 2013, respectively. The estimates represent year-over-year growth of 7.8% for 2012 and 7.4% for 2013.

WPPGY provides advertising and communications services worldwide. We currently maintain a Neutral recommendation on WPPGY. The stock also bears a Zacks #3 Rank, which implies a short-term (1-3 months) Hold rating. The company competes with other players in the industry including Interpublic Group of Companies Inc. (IPG) and Omnicom Group Inc. (OMC), both bearing a Zacks #3 Rank (Hold).

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