Agencies in all disciplines work with pro bono clients, including advertising, research and insight, public relations and media buying.
Pro bono work ranges from small one-off campaigns to major long-term partnerships. Often our pro bono clients are selected by employees, reflecting their interests and priorities. In some cases, WPP the parent company, helps to coordinate pro bono assignments involving multiple Group companies.
Performance in 2014
Pro bono work by WPP companies was worth £17.0 million in 2014 (2013: £14.7 million).
Together with our cash donations to charities of £4.8 million this means our social investment was worth £21.8 million (2013: £19.8 million), equivalent to 1.5% of reported profit before tax.
In addition, WPP media agencies negotiated free media space worth £25.1 million on behalf of pro bono clients (2013: £19.8 million), making our total social contribution worth £46.9 million (2013: £39.4 million). The value of our social investment (pro bono work and charitable donations) increased by 10% on the previous year, while our overall contribution including free media space increased by 19%.
Our pro bono work is worth more than a cash donation because it helps charities to raise funds, recruit new members and achieve their objectives. We have conducted some research to begin to understand this wider impact. This shows that our pro bono work in 2014, created wider social benefits worth £91 million to society. This includes for example, the impact of charities being able to improve health and well-being in communities.