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CNBC Exclusive: WPP Expected to Grow 5% - 6% in 2007

CNBC.com and wires

Martin Sorrell, the chief executive of advertising group WPP, said on Friday that analysts would now be expecting the advertising giant to achieve like-for-like revenue growth of between 5% and 6% in 2007.

Sorrell told "Squawk Box Europe" that WPP's like-for-like growth had been almost 8% in July. Earlier in the session Friday, WPP reported a 5.3% rise in first-half like-for-like revenues.

WPP First-Half Revenue Strong

Sorrel warned that the advertising industry could struggle when U.S. President George Bush leaves office next year.

"Where we see some room for caution is after the U.S. presidential election at the end of 2008 and into 2009," Sorrell told CNBC.

WPP, whose agencies include JWT and Young & Rubicam, reported first-half revenues of $5.8 billion and headline pretax profit of $669.2 million.

The operating margin was 13.1%, in line with the group's margin target for 2007 of 15%.

Analysts said the results showed the group was enjoying good momentum and benefiting from its strong presence in China and India, where first half organic revenues were up almost 29% and 22% respectively.

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