Restructure hits Interpublic profit

New York: The Interpublic Group – parent to PR agencies including Weber Shandwick and Golin/Harris International – posted a fourth- quarter loss of $102.5m (£56.5m) last week as it continued to struggle with its restructuring.

In an analyst conference call, the firm said the PR firms were still lagging behind other sectors in recovering from the economic downturn. ‘We’re starting to see PR come back,’ said Harris Diamond, CEO of IPG Constituency Management Group, which houses its PR firms.

The fourth-quarter loss compared with a net profit of $20.3m (£11.2m) for the previous year. Interpublic said its restructuring programme will continue through the first half of 2004.

Fourth-quarter revenue increased 5.7 per cent to $1.6bn (£882m) from the $1.54bn (£850m) in the same quarter in 2002.

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