WPP freezes hiring, board to take 20% pay cut

The world's largest advertising company will be freezing new hires as well as cutting the pay of executive committee and board members.
By: | April 2, 2020

WPP has announced a slew of cost-cutting measures to help the company cope with the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak.

The measures include freezing new hires as well as a 20% pay cut for executive committee and board members for at least three months.

WPP, the world’s largest advertising company, will also be reviewing freelance spending, postponing planned salary increases for 2020 and cutting discretionary costs such as travel expenses and the costs of entering award shows like the Cannes Festival of Creativity.

The measures are expected to save the company between £700 – 800 million in 2020.

The company says it will be looking at further measures in the coming weeks and months and has also identified more than £100 million in property and IT capital spending that it now plans to save.

“The actions we have taken in the last 18 months to streamline and simplify WPP, together with raising £3.2 billion in asset disposals, have put WPP in a strong financial position,” WPP CEO Mark Read said in a statement.

“It is clear that the companies in the strongest financial position will be best placed to protect their people, serve their clients and benefit their shareholders during a period of great uncertainty, which is why we are taking the steps we are outlining today.”

WPP has over 130,000 employees throughout its portfolio of businesses across more than 100 countries.