icon Taken Under WPP’s Wing

The WPP Group has added another member to its expanding global family in the shape of German brand consultants icon. This represents another step in WPP’s march towards dominance in the fast-growing communications services marketplace.

Founded less than a decade age, European-focussed Icon has grown quickly through its consulting services for brand and communications, product research, tracking procedures and customer satisfaction studies. To date, it has secured and satisfied a stable of international clients including Bosch, Canon, Colgate-Palmolive, Kellogg's, Kodak, Nestlé and Nokia.

The group itself puts its success down to growing demand for its variety of strategic brand management services. Industry figures back this up. Compared to the marketing services average annual growth of 7% during 1999 and 2000, icon's own revenues rose by some 21%. This positive growth trend has
continued into 2001, and if anything, has actually increased.

Commenting on the move, joint founder Karl Georg Musiol said, "The reason why we were looking for a global partner like WPP is because one of our most important objectives is to increase our international growth. When icon looked for such a strategic partner, top priorities were given to both our clients and staff."

icon is now expected to concentrate its efforts on investing in innovative and proprietary branding and research tools. It will also attempt to develop new concepts to consolidate its high ranking in brand consulting and market research.