Omnicom's PR division shows 5.9% increase in Q1 revenue

Omnicom reported $275.5 million in PR revenues for Q1, a 5.9% increase year over year. Additionally, PR saw a 2.4% organic increase. Omnicom's PR agencies include Ketchum, Porter Novelli, and Fleishman-Hillard.

Omnicom reported $275.5 million in PR revenues for Q1, a 5.9% increase year-over-year. Additionally, PR saw a 2.4% organic increase. Omnicom's PR agencies include Ketchum, Porter Novelli, Fleishman-Hillard, Brodeur, and Cone, among others

“Areas such as PR showed fairly strong organic growth,” noted EVP and CFO Randall Weisenburger during the earnings conference call. “I think these things will balance out over the course of this year. We'll see less variant and more consistent performance across the different disciplines as we go. We'll also see more consistent performance across regions.”    

Overall, Omnicom reported $2.9 billion in worldwide revenue for Q1, a 6.3% increase in top-line growth year-over-year. Profit was down .7% year-over-year, from $164.5 million to $163.4 million, reportedly due to an increase in operating expenses.

US revenue increased 3.9% year-over-year to $1.5 billion, accounting for 54.5% of the worldwide revenue. Organic revenue increased 5.1% year-over-year.

CEO John Wren said during the call, “We expect Q2 to be better when measured on a year-over-year basis.

“We saw a broader pickup in spending across industry sectors,” he added. “We're certainly confident that we should get back to double-digital earnings growth.”

Ketchum senior partner and CEO Ray Kotcher said that in Q1, the agency experienced healthy top- and bottom-line growth, due largely to more than $20 million in new business in Q1 alone. 

He would not disclose the agency's quarterly financials.

"It's safe to say that our performance was in line with our parent company's PR sector, and we did slightly better," he said.    

He also said that in Q1, the agency made 50 new US hires. 

“We see clients activating budgets more quickly than they had in the past,” he added. “For the moment, I'm optimistic about 2010 being a good year for Ketchum and PR overall, but I still think that there are so many macroeconomic questions you can't answer.”  

Other Omnicom Q1 activity included the acquisition of BoomWorks, a Montreal-based marketing communications company specializing in healthcare. 

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