Ad agency giant WPP begins cutting pay by up to 20% across agencies as clients slash spending

WPP, the world’s largest ad holding company, enacted voluntary pay cuts and other cost-control measures in response to the economic effects of the coronavirus pandemic.Some sources said leaders suggested agencies cut top salaries by as much as 20% for 90 days and that they doubted the money would come back.CEO Mark Read said 3,000 senior…

Ad agency giant WPP begins cutting pay by up to 20% across agencies as clients slash spending

WPP, the world’s largest ad holding company, enacted voluntary pay cuts and other cost-control measures in response to the economic effects of the coronavirus pandemic.Some sources said leaders suggested agencies cut top salaries by as much as 20% for 90 days and that they doubted the money would come back.CEO Mark Read said 3,000 senior leaders had accepted the voluntary cuts.The measures are part of an effort to keep the company stable as clients cut ad spending and wait for consumer spending to rebound.Click here for more BI Prime stories.

WPP, the world’s largest ad holding company, began instituting voluntary pay cuts across its agencies earlier this month.Sources said some top executives forfeited up to 20% of their salaries and that many employees don’t know that they may soon be asked to give up some of their pay. During an April 29 earnings call, CEO Mark Read said about 3,000 senior leaders have already accepted the cuts.The cuts are the beginning of an effort to reduce costs throughout 2020 as clients slash ad budgets in response to the economic slowdown caused by the coronavirus.Business Insider spoke to nine current and former WPP employees, all of whom are known but requested anonymity because they aren’t authorized to discuss the matter.

A WPP spokesman declined to comment.WPP, which employs more than 100,000 people across such agencies as Ogilvy, Mindshare, and Burson Cohn & Wolfe, had already announced cost-cutting measures on March 31, including hiring and pay freezes, an end to discretionary spending like awards shows, and mandatory 20% pay cuts for its executive committee and board of directors over the n
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