Belfast Telegraph

WPP facing US price-fixing probe in video advertising sector

Advertising giant WPP is facing a probe by US authorities over potential price-fixing in the video advertising industry.

The company confirmed on Monday that three of its American subsidiaries had been contacted by the US Department of Justice (DOJ) antitrust unit.

It is the latest major agency to be targeted by the investigation, after rivals Omnicom, Publicis and Intercom disclosed that some of their subsidiaries were contacted earlier this month.

The antitrust unit is understood to be investigating whether agencies have been rigging the bidding process for client video production contracts in a way that would favour in-house production teams.

The DOJ declined to comment.

In a statement released on Monday, WPP said: "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."

WPP's London-listed shares closed flat, down 1p at 1,782p.