WME-IMG Launches Philanthropic Partnership With UNICEF
It’s the first such worldwide partnership for the mega-agency.
WME-IMG is partnering with the United Nations Children’s Fund, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
The mega-agency will lend its resources to help create and distribute content that promotes UNICEF's humanitarian causes and identify opportunities to connect the organization with its clients and feature it in its vast portfolio of events, such as Fashion Week and numerous sports tournaments.
"WME-IMG's employees work with some of the world's greatest influencers, brands and storytellers, all of whom care deeply about the welfare of our next generation," WME-IMG co-CEOs Ari Emanuel and Patrick Whitesell said in a joint statement. "Through this partnership, we will mobilize our global network to ignite action around UNICEF's most pressing issues, encouraging people to get — and stay — involved."
The WME-IMG Foundation will continue its community outreach to its partner schools in Compton, Calif., Brooklyn, London and Nashville, Tenn., but the UNICEF partnership is the first time since the agency's 2014 merger that it will work with a charity that matches its worldwide reach (WME-IMG has offices in more than 25 countries).
The agency announced the partnership at its retreat last week via a panel that included WME-IMG Foundation Executive Director Tascha Rudder, U.S. Fund for UNICEF President and CEO Caryl M. Stern and Lilly Singh, aka YouTube star Superwoman, who is active in women's empowerment advocacy. Singh's fellow WME client Tom Hiddleston, who made a much-discussed acceptance speech that mentioned UNICEF at the Golden Globes on Sunday, taped a video praising the partnership that was shown during the panel.
"With 16,000 thousand children dying each day of preventable causes and tens of millions more displaced by violence and extreme poverty, UNICEF's work on behalf of children is as important now as ever," Stern said in a statement. "Through this partnership with WME-IMG, we can change the narrative and the way the entertainment industry thinks about global social impact. It is an extraordinary opportunity and I am very excited about what we can achieve together. With their support, we look forward to engaging with influential figures around the world to keep the world's children in the spotlight, allowing them to survive and thrive despite the obstacles."