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Interpublic Enters Into Exclusive Executive Recruitment Agreement With Brian Brooks; Chief Human Resources Officer Moves to Consulting Role

NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Feb. 6, 2004--The Interpublic Group announced today that its Chief Human Resources Officer, Brian Brooks, would be moving to a consulting role with the company. The change was prompted by Mr. Brooks' desire to focus exclusively on talent management and recruitment, as well as organizational development issues, while stepping away from the administrative responsibilities involved in heading the human resources function of a multinational public company. Brooks, long known as the top executive recruiter in the marketing services industry, will work exclusively with Interpublic in the sector.

"One of the top priorities of our new management team's turnaround plan has been attracting, retaining and deploying outstanding talent. This is vital in an idea business such as ours," said David Bell, Interpublic Chairman and CEO. "Brian has played a key role in our very successful talent development and recruitment efforts of late. We are fortunate, both at the Interpublic level and within our operating companies, to have Brian available to us as a resource. That is why we have entered into an agreement to have industry exclusivity with him. I know he will continue to help Interpublic going forward by focusing his considerable talents solely on the group's organizational development and recruitment needs."

"I look forward to working with David, Chris Coughlin, John Dooner and other operating company CEOs to ensure that Interpublic continues to build on the great success we have enjoyed in bringing in world-class executives such as Chris Coughlin, Rupert Howell, Robert Campbell, Brett Gosper, Joe McGee and many others. I am currently at work on many equally important searches," said Mr. Brooks. "Recently, I have decided that I want to devote myself exclusively to the talent and organizational development side of human resources and step back from the very significant administrative responsibilities inherent in heading my function at a multinational public company. Identifying and recruiting talent and providing counsel to the leaders of communications agencies on the development of their organizations is what I love to do. I am fortunate to be in position to concentrate my energy on the work I am most passionate about and the area in which I can add the greatest value to Interpublic. Our continuing close association will allow me to contribute to Interpublic's success, while enabling me to develop comparable expertise in closely related fields such as media, entertainment and other professional services, which will be increasingly important to the future of our industry. I am excited about this new phase in my career."

Mr. Brooks' administrative responsibilities at Interpublic will be assumed on an interim basis by Jeff Mook, 42, Senior Vice President, Executive Compensation and Benefits, until the company appoints a new head of human resources.

Brooks, 48, joined Interpublic in November of 2002 after 10 years at WPP Group, where he was Executive Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer, as well as a member of that company's Board of Directors. He is an attorney and was previously a Partner at Towers Perrin, a leading global human resources consulting firm, where he spent nine years in the international division, specializing in executive compensation and organizational development.

About Interpublic

Interpublic is one of the world's leading organizations of advertising agencies and marketing services companies. Major global brands include Draft, Foote, Cone & Belding Worldwide, Golin/Harris International, Initiative Media, Lowe & Partners Worldwide, McCann-Erickson, Universal McCann and Weber Shandwick Worldwide. Leading domestic brands include Campbell-Ewald, Deutsch and Hill Holliday.

CONTACT: General Inquiries:
Financial Relations Board
Julie Tu, 212-445-8456
or
Media:
Interpublic Group of Companies, Inc.
Philippe Krakowsky, 212-399-8088
or
Analysts:
Interpublic Group of Companies, Inc.
Dan Leib, 212-621-5767

SOURCE: The Interpublic Group