Adman Martin Sorell back amongst the mad men, six weeks after WPP ouster

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Three decades after turning a maker of wire shopping baskets into the world’s biggest company, Martin Sorrell is about to find out if he still has the magic touch.

The former WPP Plc chief executive officer will take control of a publicly traded company just over six weeks after his abrupt exit from WPP. Ltd., a vehicle largely funded by Sorrell, will be acquired by Capital Plc, an investment firm that raised 2.3 million pounds ($3 million) in its initial public offering at the end of 2016. The reverse takeover will leave Sorrell as chairman of Derriston, which will change its name to S4 and seek to make acquisitions, said.

“is a company that aims to build a multi-national communication services business focused on growth,” Sorrell said in a statement. “There are significant opportunities for development in technology, data and content. I look forward to making this happen.”

The announcement is the answer to speculation about what Sorrell, who built WPP into an giant, was planning after he was ousted from the group following a probe into alleged personal misconduct and misuse of company assets. His return after a brief hiatus will be watched closely by WPP and it peers, which have been pressured in recent years both by internet giants such as Google and Facebook Inc., but also seen marketing business gobbled up by the likes of Accenture Plc.

Sorrell resigned from London-based WPP last month. The shell company that he built into a global network of more than 400 agencies with 200,000 employees didn’t make the allegations against him public. Sorrell has denied any wrongdoing.

recently raised 51 million pounds, said, of which Sorrell contributed 40 million pounds, with the balance coming from institutional and other investors. In addition, a number of S4 Capital’s institutional investors have indicated they are willing to provide more than 150 million pounds of further funding to support the company’s acquisition plans, it said.

At a Techonomy conference in New York this month, Sorrell said he wasn’t going into voluntary or involuntary retirement and described himself as having been “extracted” from WPP, which he called a “legacy” company with various “warts and problems.”

In January, after a year in which it made no deals, Derriston announced a change in strategy, saying it now seeks acquisitions within all technology and other high-growth sectors from just focusing on medtech.