Publicis Groupe's European revenue boosted by UK

Publicis Groupe has reported revenue of €655m ($704.4m) in Europe for the first quarter of the year, up 3.8% compared with the same period last year, and boosted by growth in the UK and France.

Organic revenue, when the impact of acquisitions and exchange rates is taken away, increased 5.5 per cent.

In its first quarter revenue released this morning, Publicis Groupe noted the "good performance" in France, up 11.9 per cent, and the "dynamism" of the UK and Italy, which grew 9.1 per cent and 6.3 per cent respectively.

Total revenue was €2.3bn ($2.5b) for the first quarter, up 1.6 per cent compared with the same period last year, but down 1.2 per cent organically.

The organic growth is a slight improvement on the previous quarter when Publicis Groupe reported a decrease of 2.5 per cent.

Maurice Lévy (pictured), chairman and chief executive of Publicis Groupe, said he expects the second quarter to "remain in negative territory, but to show an improvement compared with the first quarter".

He also announced that he will become chairman of the supervisory board once he steps down, if the shareholders agree. Lévy explained that he will "play an active part in the consolidating of our clients, providing support to our teams when and where I am needed".

Arthur Sadoun will take over from Lévy in June.

Lévy added: "Instability continues to prevail in the international environment, causing companies to proceed with great caution despite strong balance sheets.

"Changes in the field of technology, in consumer behavior and in the media landscape have led companies to question their business models and marketing strategies.

"Our recent successes show that our investment in Sapient, our own business model, which has been influenced by innovation, and our understanding of advertisers needs, have put us in a strong position to help our clients overcome these difficult obstacles.

"Moreover, Publicis has been substantially transformed to enable us to provide our clients with even better ‘end-to-end’ service in business transformation."

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