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THE merger between WPP-owned agencies Bates Enterprise and David may finally come through in India in a couple of months, but it may have a huge cost associated with it. According to industry sources, David’s chairman & national creative director Josy Paul, who is one of the designated managing directors for the merged entity, may not be involved with the running of the merged entity and will be looking for options within the WPP group or even outside of it. According to sources, Josy Paul is expressing interest in starting off something on his own within the WPP group, particularly in the new media. According to sources, the only way that Josy Paul is likely to continue heading David is if the merger doesn’t happen. If the merger does happen, it would mean a shift from the way Mr Paul ran David and it’s allied businesses like Wall Street David, the outdoor agency.

"Josy would have much less freedom, as he would have to report to a lot of people from Bates, O&M and WPP even if he is designated managing director and creative director WPP," according to sources. Already, a few agencies have expressed interest in signing up Mr Paul if he does quit, including JWT, one of WPP’s largest agency networks, and Law & Kenneth. Another possibility that might lead to Mr Paul not sticking to the agency that has come up is the total collapse of David as a brand and an agency.

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