Havas sees fourth quarter improvement, but UK market is 'still suffering'

Marketing services group Havas reported improved trading conditions in the fourth quarter, but saw revenues in its UK businesses drop by 14.3 per cent in the final quarter of the year.

Group chairman: Vincent Bolloré
Group chairman: Vincent Bolloré

The group, which includes Cake and Euro RSCG Biss Lancaster, noted that the UK market is 'still suffering from the effects of the crisis' and performance was hit by 'the steep reduction in advertising spending in the UK'.

Full-year revenues for the UK fell by 11.6 per cent during 2009 to €164m (£144m).

Overall group revenue fell 7.9 per cent during the year to €1.4bn. Its fourth quarter performance was only 4.4 per cent down on a like-for-like basis against the same period in 2008 after being 9.2 per cent down over the first nine months of the year.

The group said that its health communications division reported positive growth over the year as a whole, as did its media and corporate communication businesses, which for the first time in the year returned to positive figures in fourth quarter 2009.

Net new business for 2009 was €1.2bn (£1.05bn).

The results include figures for both Havas Media and Havas Worldwide. Vincent Bolloré is the group's chairman.

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