Red Havas forecasts 50 per cent growth in UK after series of client wins

Red Havas is forecasting 50 per cent growth in 2021 after a strong first year in operation following the global merger of its PR agencies.

(L-R) Rachael Sansom and James Wright
(L-R) Rachael Sansom and James Wright

In the past year, Red Havas said it grew by “well over two-thirds” following a series of major client wins, including Jaguar Land Rover (European importer region), ManpowerGroup (globally), Unicef (globally) and global fintech firm WEX.

Its content arm, Red Connect, was chosen by LinkedIn as its global content partner, while the Red Havas Manchester office added Auto Trader and Collection Cosmetics.

The growth indicates Red Havas is outperforming the rest of Havas Group, which in Q3 reported an organic net revenue drop of 10.4 per cent due to a decline in the advertising market.

In 2019, Havas PR UK, Havas PR North America and Australian PR group Red Agency merged and rebranded as Red Havas.

As Red Havas is part of the listed French media company Vivendi, the agency would not disclose specific financial figures, but told PRWeek it had experienced strong double-digit growth and expects a 50 per cent increase this year, despite the economic downturn.

The agency now has 30 staff in the UK, and last year made several senior appointments. These included Richard Clarke, who was previously Boots global client partner at Ogilvy; James Garland, who joined from Saatchi & Saatchi to run digital; and the promotion of Nuala O’Neill to the role of client services director.

Red Havas London managing director Rachael Sansom told PRWeek its success was down to adding several blue-chip clients and its new merged media model, which brings together earned media, traditional and digital publishing, content, social media and data into a single offering.

“2020 was Red Havas UK’s first full year in operation and, despite the challenges of the pandemic, we saw extremely high double-digit growth in the UK, fuelled by a raft of blue-chip client wins locally and internationally, across sectors and spanning integrated briefs in digital, content, corporate and consumer,” she said. 

“We are excited about 2021 as we look to grow our senior specialist capability in creative, ESG and corporate. Health will also be a key focus for us in 2021.”

James Wright, global chief executive of Red Havas and chairman of the Havas PR Collective, said: “Despite the challenging circumstances, our UK operation flourished, focusing on new business growth and building even stronger integrated client relationships as part of our merged media offering. 

“We had particular success in building our content, social and data capabilities. As we continue to elevate our healthcare and wellness positioning globally in 2021, the UK will play a key role in offering brands a strategic Europe-based hub.”

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