The significant sum is boosted by a further £50m in debt funding, offering a springboard for Sorrell in his bid to forge a challenger marketing firm specialising in technology, data and content.
Despite the significance of the sums involved, questions have been raised as to why S4 Capital had fallen short of its stated aim of raising £150m in equity, with sources informing The Times that it was common to forward fund new ventures through a combination of debt and equity.
Allegations of personal misconduct leveled against Sorrell had threatened to undermine his comeback hopes but he received an important message of support at the weekend from Keith Weed, marketing chief at Unilever, who told The Sunday Times: “Martin has just announced what he is doing, so I’ll wait and see what it is. But as far as I’m concerned, I will work with the best in any market.”
Sorrell has also pumped £40m of his own personal wealth into the business, leveraging a further £11m from other investors having stated categorically that he is not yet ready for retirement.