OLIVER commits to Ad Net Zero amidst climate crisis

World-leading in-house agency provider OLIVER has committed to achieving its net zero target globally by 2030, if not sooner via its dedicated climate team.

OLIVER, the only company in the world to exclusively design, build and run in-house agencies and marketing ecosystems for brands, has joined Ad Net Zero. The partnership will help tackle the climate crisis caused by human activities resulting in CO2e emissions.

Along with parent company the Inside Ideas Group (also known as IIG, a 4000-person-strong collective comprising marketing specialists OLIVER, Dare, Adjust Your Set and Aylesworth Fleming), OLIVER will reach carbon neutrality in the UK by 2030 ~ as is a requirement of Ad Net Zero. However, the business has pledged to take an international view from the start, intending to achieve carbon neutrality globally in the same time-frame. The UK plan will be super-charged by a team of Ad Net Zero Ambassadors.

As part of OLIVER and IIG’s ambition, new policies will be embedded, a climate-conscious supply chain will be established and best practices will be shared within the 500 client brands and 250+ marketing ecosystems that it works with.

Simon Martin, founder and CEO of OLIVER and IIG, said: “There’s no brief more important than stopping our climate emergency. It’s why we want to put the environment at the centre of our business and significantly reduce the carbon footprint of marketing and advertising.

“Despite already being a carbon-aware company, we’re growing rapidly and therefore have a responsibility to raise standards on a global scale. We’re asking ourselves, how can we work with brands in a totally carbon-neutral way? And we’re committed to finding the answers so that we can become better for our clients, better for the future of our industry and better for the planet.”

Sharon Whale, CEO of Global Markets and Operations, added: “Applying the same innovative thinking that started our business 17 years ago, we want to take Ad Net Zero’s outstanding standards and bake them into our business. We’re looking forward to sharing our plans and learnings with the wider community so that, in the spirit of collective action, we all reach a carbon neutral status fast and effectively.” OLIVER and IIG will roll-out an immediate six-month action to reduce working practices that harm the environment. The Ad Net Zero Ambassador team will be led by the company’s Group Account Director Lucy Usher and Managing Director Chris Woodward.

The initial plan includes:

  • Operations: curtailing carbon emissions, principally by reducing travel, fossil energy use and waste.
  • Production: measuring and reducing our impact with support from AdGreen, the initiative that unites advertisers to eliminate the negative impacts of production.
  • Media choice: working with the IPA Media Futures Group Climate Charter and clients to develop low carbon media plans.
  • Awards and events: build sustainability criteria into awards, and plan events to minimise carbon footprints.
  • Advertising’s positive influence: harness the power of advertising to promote more sustainable consumer choices and behaviours.

In 2020, OLIVER was named Campaign’s Digital Network of the Year (EMEA) and AdWeek’s Fastest Growing Large Agency (US, 2020 and 20201). It was also named in The Drum’s New Years Honors list for ‘helping brands get their in-housing in order’. Having grown 35% during the pandemic, it is expected to continue its exponential global growth.

A recent report by the Advertising Association found that the total UK agency operational CO2e emissions exceeds 84,000 tonnes a year. Ad Net Zero – founded by AA, IPA and ISBA – was created to get advertisers responding to the climate crisis. It is backed by brands including Sky, Unilever, The Guardian, DMA, PRCA, The Marketing Society and The Marketing Academy. Read more about Ad Net Zero here, and about AdGreen here.