Sir Martin Sorrell warns perfect storm looms over Britain

Sir Martin Sorrell warns perfect storm looms over Britain after Bank of England predicts inflation will soar and a recession could follow

Sir Martin Sorrell has warned that a perfect storm looms over Britain after the Bank of England predicted inflation will soar to a 40-year high and a recession could follow. 

The advertising tycoon said a mixture of supply chain difficulties, the Ukraine war, the oil price and central bank policies means he is preparing for difficult times ahead. 

His cautious comments came after his digital advertising agency S4 Capital published its annual results which had been delayed twice in March. 

Warning: Sir Martin Sorrell said a mixture of supply chain difficulties, the Ukraine war, the oil price and central bank policies means he is preparing for difficult times ahead

Warning: Sir Martin Sorrell said a mixture of supply chain difficulties, the Ukraine war, the oil price and central bank policies means he is preparing for difficult times ahead

He called the delays ‘unacceptable and embarrassing’ and promised ‘significant’ improvements to financial control, risk and governance at the company. S4 made a loss of £42m for the year on revenues that soared 100pc to £686m from £342.7m a year earlier. 

Sorrell, 77, hailed S4’s global team for responding ‘unflinchingly’ to the war in Ukraine. 

But with oil prices continuing to rise and supply chains disrupted, he told the Mail that globalisation ‘is alive and kicking but not at the rate it did before’. Sir Martin was responding to BlackRock’s chief executive Larry Fink, who in March said Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has ‘put an end’ to globalisation. 

He added: ‘If we had this conversation 90 days ago, we would have said worldwide GDP would have been 4-to5 per cent. Worldwide GDP growth is now around 3 per cent which is still stronger than pre-Covid levels between 1-and-2 per cent.’ 

Despite his warnings, Sir Martin told the Mail that young entrepreneurs should not be ‘deterred’ because ‘tough economic conditions often bring opportunities’. 

He also used the results to take aim at the Government and Bank of England after interest rates rose from 0.75 per cent to 1 per cent this week and the Bank forecast inflation could touch 10 per cent later this year. 

He told the Evening Standard: ‘The central banks are trying to put the brakes on, but they are behind the curve.’