New CFO: IPG shifts reporting structure

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Interpublic Group of Cos. changed the reporting structure for McCann-Erickson WorldGroup's new chief financial officer to increase accountability. The shift came as the Securities and Exchange Commission continued an informal review of Interpublic's accounting practices.

Arthur D'Angelo, who will join McCann in January, will report to McCann CEO Jim Heekin on operational matters and to Interpublic Chief Financial Officer Sean Orr on financial issues. His predecessor, Salvatore LaGreca, who recently left, reported only to Mr. Heekin.

"We want this executive to have a sense of accountability to the corporation and to its shareholders, someone who is strong and whose concerns are not going to be sacrificed in light of what an operating executive might want," said a senior executive familiar with the matter. Interpublic is considering similar reporting structures at other operating divisions, according to knowledgeable executives.

Investor confidence in the holding company has been shaken in recent months following management disclosures of internal accounting problems at McCann that resulted in a $181.3 million financial restatement. Of that amount, $101 million related to improper accounting at McCann; $36.3 million was for other charges, mostly related to estimates of insurance proceeds not yet realized, while the remaining $44 million related to other charges outside McCann.

"I look forward to partnering with Art, whose strengths and experience will free me to focus on McCann's professional product and its growth," said Mr. Heekin.

Mr. D'Angelo, 51, brings a breadth of advertising and marketing communications-industry experience to the battered network. Since 1997, in addition to serving as Cordiant Communications' finance director, he has been a member of Cordiant's board. Before that, he was chief financial officer of Cordiant's Bates Worldwide advertising agency network. His industry experience began in 1987 when he was tax director at Saatchi & Saatchi Holdings USA; he rose to chief administrative officer, then CEO before joining Bates in 1994.

"Art understands the workings and the financial requirements of public holding companies, ad agency networks, and marketing services firms," said Mr. Orr.

Fast Facts

Name: Arthur D'Angelo

Age: 51

Title: Chief financial officer, McCann-Erickson WorldGroup

Challenge: Restore investor confidence in Interpublic's flagship agency network

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