Havas beats expectations

Marcoms group Havas has seen its share price rise 10 per cent this morning after its annual results beat analysts' expectations.

Paris: Havas' base
Paris: Havas' base

The owner of Maitland and Euro RSCG Biss Lancaster posted a 12.5 per cent increase in operating income and a 4.7% organic growth in revenues. Net-debt also fell by 69 per cent to €79m (£70.8m) from €226m.

Despite the tough market conditions, the group reported a 2 per cent organic revenue increase during the fourth quarter.

Fernando Rodés Vilà, chief executive officer said: ‘Despite a much weakened economic environment, our ability to adapt, our creativity, our media expertise, growth in our digital business and the balanced geographic spread of our revenues enabled us to achieve these results for full year 2008.'

The group declined to talk in specifics about its 2009 performance, but said its ‘position of strength enables us to face the current challenging economic climate with confidence'.

In 2008 its revenues in Europe grew 3.3 per cent (2 per cent in the UK), while rest of the world excluding North America saw a strong 6.5 per cent increase. The North American market saw a revenue drop of 2 per cent.


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