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What began with a roar in the ad industry is now merely a whimper: Bates, the acquisition that once stunned Madison Avenue and ultimately set off the downfall of the Saatchi brothers, faces a difficult existence as a medium-size independent with a costly global infrastructure and few worldwide clients to sustain it.

More than five years after the demerger of Cordiant plc, the fate of Bates’ parent, Cordiant Communications Group, stands in sharp contrast to one-time corporate sibling Saatchi & Saatchi.

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