Publicis PR revenue outpaces rest of holding company

PARIS: Publicis Groupe saw organic revenue growth of higher than 5% in the third quarter at MSLGroup and its other PR agencies, according to a high-ranking source at the company.

PARIS: Publicis Groupe saw organic revenue growth of higher than 5% in the third quarter at MSLGroup and its other PR agencies, according to a high-ranking source at the company.

The holding company reported 2% overall organic revenue growth in the third quarter to $2.1 billion. It previously said it expected more than 4% revenue growth in Q3.

The Paris-based company saw 2.5% overall organic revenue growth in the first nine months of the year to $6.1 billion, compared with the same period of the prior year.

CEO Maurice Levy said in an earnings statement that Publicis saw an upward trend this summer, "then September brought a sudden downturn in the economies of Europe."

“Instead of the 6.6% growth forecast for September, the month ended with negative growth of 1.6%, mainly as a result of Europe,” he said in the earnings statement.

In North America, Publicis reported third-quarter revenue of $1.04 billion, up 3.2% organically compared with the previous year. In the first nine months of the year, the holding company earned $2.99 billion in North America, representing growth of 2.8% compared with 2011.

Publicis cited MSLGroup account wins of Wal-Mart in Hong Kong and Taitra in Taiwan in the new business section of the earnings statement.

All four major holding companies reported disappointing overall third-quarter results. Interpublic Group, which owns and operates Weber Shandwick and GolinHarris in its stable of firms, said overall organic revenue was down 0.9% in the third quarter to $1.67 billion. However, its PR firms saw nearly 6% growth in the period.

Last week, Omnicom Group reported that its revenue was up 0.8% organically in Q3 and its PR revenue was down 0.3% organically in the period.

WPP's PR and public affairs revenue was down 1.7% on a like-for-like basis in Q3 compared with the prior year, and overall revenue was up 1.9% on a like-for-like basis.

Organic growth represents change in revenue without measuring the impact of acquisitions and disposals.

Note: All figures were converted from Euros to American dollars using the XE currency exchange calculator.

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