Monday, February 13, 2006

He bangs a drum OK?

Sir Martin Sorrell is the latest to run afoul of the former pornographer in chief Richmond Desmond (whose media interest used to comprise solely of the likes of Asian Babes and Horny Housewives) as he finds himself in a legal spat over the launch of OK! in the US.

Desmond is claiming as much as $10m in the row in which MediaCom is supposed to have guarantied advertising in OK!. It's a tit for tat legal row (WPP is suing for unpaid bills relating to the launch of the magazine), which will be settled out of court, but it is another reminder of the perils of doing business with Desmond.

  The former Telegraph chief executive Jeremy Deedes knows this only too well after he was greeted at a now notorious meeting two years ago with "Guten morgen", the German for good morning, as Desmond proceeded to swear and 'sieg heil' in a tirade of foul-mouthed abuse aimed at Telegraph Group executives, in which he damned the paper's potential new owners, German publisher Axel Springer, as Nazis.

Desmond has a thing about the Nazis. He has several times laid into arch-rival Associated Newspapers about alleged Nazi links using the Sunday Express on one occasion to expose ties between the paper's owners the Rothermeres and the Nazis in the 1930s.

There's also Desmond's talked-of dealings with the Mafia although these have largely been rubbished, but there are out there, alongside the porn past and the and Nazi jibes, all combining to build a picture.

Most damning of all, however, and the real reason to warn off potential business partners, is that one of his official media press shots shows him playing the drums. In his office. Posted by Picasa

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