Following on from yesterday’s revelations that Omnicom and Publicis had been subpoenaed in the US for alleged price fixing and fraud comes news that WPP in the US is now being looked at by authorities too.
Yesterday, the world’s biggest media agency confirmed that three of its American subsidiaries had been contacted by the US Department of Justice (DOJ) antitrust unit.
Similar to the allegations levelled at Omnicom and Publicis, WPP is being investigated for allegedly rigging the bidding process for client video productions that favoured its own internal agencies to the detriement of independents. Ad post-production services are said to be worth $US5 billion in the US and are the lifeblood of many independents.
The DOJ has not yet made any comment relating to WPP, however, yesterday the company issued a media statement that read: “WPP confirms that, similarly to Interpublic, Omnicom and Publicis, three of its subsidiaries have received subpoenas from the US Department of Justice Antitrust Division concerning the division’s ongoing investigation of video production and post-production practices in the advertising industry. WPP and its subsidiaries are fully co-operating with the inquiries.”