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Mark Read and Andrew Scott were suddenly thrust into the spotlight Saturday night when WPP announced that CEO Martin Sorrell was stepping down amid an unspecified allegation. Read and Scott were named chief operating officers, reporting to WPP Chairman Roberto Quarta until a new CEO is appointed.

Both Read, CEO at Wunderman and WPP Digital, and Scott, WPP's corporate development director and chief operating officer for Europe, had been floated in past years as possible successors to WPP's iconic leader, but WPP always remained notoriously hush-hush about its potential future leadership.

Now Read will be responsible for clients, operating companies and people, while Scott will focus on financial and operational performance and "implementing the ongoing reorganization of the Group's portfolio," according to a client-facing Q&A issued by WPP.

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