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Former US Posterscope executives face trial over $19.75m fraud allegations

Media buyer Aegis is flying high at the moment, reporting third quarter organic revenues up 11 per cent, but the company is facing a potentially embarrassing court trial of two former executives in the US that may cast some light on the opaque business of out of home media deals.

Former president Todd Hansen (pictured) and finance director James Buckley at the US division of Aegis’ Posterscope out of home business have been charged with a five-year fraud amounting to $19.75m following an FBI investigation.

They are accused of falsifying revenue figures to make it appear that certain performance targets had been hit, netting them bonuses of $1.1m and $650,000 respectively. Both are to appear in court.

Back in February Aegis wrote off a sum variously estimated at between £25m and £37m because of a bad debt from Spanish client Nueva Rumasa.

Posterscope dominates the out of home specialist agency sector with rival WPP’s Kinetic. Both businesses are highly profitable although it is impossible to say how much Posterscope contributes to Aegis as its figures are no longer quoted separately in the company’s accounts.

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