Cordiant axes 400 staff worldwide but spares London jobs

Advertising group Cordiant is axing a further 400 jobs across the

world and has slashed its profit forecasts and issued its third profit

warning in a year.



Cordiant operations in Britain, which include Bates UK, will not be

affected by the cuts, which will hit offices in the US, Europe, the Far

East and Latin America.



The group blames its action on the global economic downturn, which it

says has led to "an unprecedented rate of decline in marketing

expenditure". As a result, Cordiant expects its revenues to fall by 9

per cent compared with the 5 per cent drop forecast in September.



Michael Bungey, Cordiant's chief executive, said he expected other

groups to be announcing similarly gloomy news. But he rejected

suggestions that Cordiant's problems had left it more vulnerable to a

takeover.



Bungey said: "We feel very confident about our ability to perform

because we've made the right moves in a difficult market. We'll emerge

as a stronger company because we've taken important decisions which, in

better times, we might have put off."



Bob Willott, the editor of the industry newsletter Marketing Services

Financial Intelligence, said Cordiant was suffering because of its late

arrival as a global player after its 1997 demerger from the Saatchi &

Saatchi group.



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