The holding companies appear to be coming out of their COVID slumps with Omnicom the latest to post promising results.
Reporting on its Q1 numbers from January to the end of March, the New York-based agency reported revenues were down 1.8 per cent year over year, although it was a vast improvement from the 9.6 per cent organic decline posted year over year in Q4 last year.
Omnicom’s better than expected result follows on from Publicis’ Q1 numbers, reported last Friday, that showed the Paris-based company had posted Q1 revenue growth of 2.8 per cent.
According to Omnicom’s numbers its advertising agencies enjoyed 1.2 per cent organic growth in Q1 while the media business – that includes the likes of OMD and PHD – returned to positive growth for the first time in 12 months.
The worst performers in the the group were obviously the ones most affected by COVID, with field marketing down 33 per cent and shopper marketing down 13 per cent.
Omicom’s PR agencies took a collective hit of 3.5 per cent.
In terms of territory performances, APAC (where Australia reports) enjoyed 2.5 per cent organic growth, North America declined 3.2 per cent, while the UK suffered a whopping 6.3 per cent hit. Latin America decreased by 2.4 per cent, while the Middle East and Africa declined 10.2 per cent.
On the upside, Omnicom’s Chinese events business saw “a significant return to growth”.
Commenting on the numbers, Omnicom CEO John Wren (main photo) said: “It has taken some time to turn the corner, and we are now on a clear path to return to growth. We are at the beginning of the end of the pandemic.
“If 2020 taught us anything, it’s to expect the unexpected, and we will continue to move forward with vigilance,” Wren said.
When it came to possible acquisitions, Omnicom CFO Phil Angelastro said, “We do currently plan to be a little more aggressive in terms of looking for the right opportunities… We won’t lose our discipline … but we will be more aggressive.”
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