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WPP confirms its agencies have been subpoenaed in DOJ probe

Three WPP subsidiaries have received subpoenas from the U.S. Department of Justice.

WPP has confirmed three of its subsidiaries have received subpoenas from the US Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division in its investigation of video production and post-production practices in the ad industry.

In a statement, the firm said, “WPP and its subsidiaries are fully cooperating with the enquiries.”

The Justice Department is investigating alleged price fixing and bid rigging by ad companies seeking to win contracts for their own in-house production teams as they face increased competition in the $5 billion industry from hundreds of independent firms.

Holding companies including Interpublic, Omnicom and Publicis have also reportedly received subpoenas.

A rep for Omnicom said the firm is not saying anything beyond the statement it issued December 16, which noted two Omnicom subsidiaries have been subpoenaed.

“Omnicom's outside legal counsel has contacted representatives of the Antitrust Division and the company is fully cooperating with the investigation,” the statement said.

Interpublic has also confirmed one of its agencies was contacted.

The Drum is awaiting comment from Publicis.

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