New York—WPP Group won an auction for Grey Global Group, agreeing to pay $1,005 a share, or about $1.4 billion, according to a statement released by WPP.
Upon completion of the acquisition, WPP will own 100% of Grey. The deal is 50% cash and 50% stock.
Grey’s advertising business will be run as an independent unit within WPP.
Ed Meyer, Grey chairman, president and CEO, will continue in his position until December 2006. He has been offered a position on the board of WPP.
The other bidders in the auction for Grey were Hellman & Friedman, a private equity investment firm, and the Paris-based Havas advertising agency group.
Completion of the deal is expected late in the fourth quarter or early in the first.