Sir Martin Sorrell’s S4 Capital has posted double digit growth in 2020 despite the COVID pandemic.
Reporting its 2020 numbers overnight, S4 posted a 19.4 per cent growth in organic revenue to £295.2m ($534 million).
The company also posted an operating profit of £8.1m, while profit before income tax was £3.1m. However, on a reported basis, S4 posted a statutory loss of £3.9m due to financial adjustments after taxation.
• Billings £653.4 million, up 43.4% reported, up 19.6% like-for-like*** and pro-forma** billings £768.4 million, up 22.3%.
• Revenue £342.7 million, up 59.3% reported from £215.1 million, like-for-like up 15.2%, pro-forma up 20.1%.
• Gross profit £295.2 million, up 72.3% reported from £171.3 million, like-for-like up 19.4%, pro-forma up 23.7%.
• Operational EBITDA £62.2 million, up 86.1% reported, like-for-like up 18.3%, pro-forma up 30.6%.
• Operating profit £8.1million versus an operating loss of £3.8 million in 2019. Operating profit is after charging £49.9 million of Adjusting Items relating to acquisitions, amortisation and share based payments (including £7.4 million in deferred, contingent combination payments tied to continued employment). Pro-forma operating profit of £16.9 million versus an operating loss of £1.2 million in 2019.
• Profit before income tax £3.1 million, after charging adjusting items, versus a loss of £9.2 million in 2019 and pro-forma profit before income tax of £12.1 million
• Statutory result for the period £3.9 million (loss) after charging adjusting items after taxation versus £10.0 million (loss) in 2019 and pro-forma result for the period of £1.2 million (loss)
• Adjusted basic net result per share 7.9p versus 5.2p in 2019 and 9.8p pro-forma
• Basic and diluted net result per share 0.8p (loss) which includes adjusting items after tax versus 2.7p (loss) in 2019 and pro-forma adjusted basic net result per share 0.2p (loss)
• Year-end net cash £51.6 million, even after significant combination payments since £113 million net fundraising in July 2020, reflecting strong liquidity from operations and EBITDA conversion to cash flow from operating activities of 99% versus 74% in 2019
• Good start to 2021 with like-for-like January gross profit well ahead of budget and with budgeted gross profit growth like-for-like for 2021 of 25%
Commenting in the results, Sorrell said: “Our second full financial year was again outstandingly successful. Having established brand awareness and secured brand trial in the back end of 2018 and in 2019, we set about converting client relationships at scale and now have five “Whoppers” secure or in sight, in line with our ultimate 20 squared objective, that is 20 clients each generating revenues of over $20 million per annum.
“Pride of place for these achievements should go to our (now) over 4,400 people in 31 countries, who have responded unflinchingly to the colossal strain and challenge of the pandemic. Their creativity, adaptability, resilience and hard work have made this success possible and have started to prove the potency of our new age/new era, digital, data-driven, unitary model, which has started to gain significant traction. The pandemic has, at the same time, accelerated adoption of digital transformation amongst consumers, across all media and within enterprises and, in turn, stimulated the demand from clients for digital marketing expertise.
“We continued to grow our top line and bottom line at industry leading rates, despite covid-19 and exhibited agility in developing new content revenue streams quickly, such as robotic production, animation and on-line events and driving data & digital marketing net revenues, particularly in the fourth quarter and into this year. We continued to broaden and deepen our Content and Data & digital media practices through organic growth and by the addition of a further four Content and six Data & digital media companies in 2020 and so far in early 2021. We further integrated our unitary client offering around our Content and Data & digital media practices. We broadened and deepened our client roster. We embraced the diversity, equity and inclusion and ESG opportunities and challenges with unique black-orientated fellowship and female executive leadership programmes, changed hiring practices and education programmes and made zero carbon commitments targeting 2024. We achieved double $ and £ Unicorn status in terms of stock market value, in only our second full year, while strengthening our balance sheet to take advantage of short-term opportunities.
“2021 has started strongly, well in line with our latest three year plan to double organically in three years and we are focused on three objectives for the year – to bed down our two new “Whoppers” and develop and identify five more; to roll-out our unitary branding; and to continue to broaden and deepen our digital client offering by combination. We believe 2021 and 2022 will be very strong years economically, as the world rebounds from the pandemic and spends and invests the huge pandemic-driven fiscal and monetary stimulus. Digital marketing expenditure is closely correlated, but not dependent on GDP growth, just as traditional media spending used to be in the last century.”
Today, Integral Ad Science (IAS), a global leader in digital ad verification, released its Media Quality Report (MQR) for H2 2020, providing transparency into the performance and quality of Australian digital media, alongside global comparisons. Integral Ad Science’s H2 2020 MQR highlights brand safety, ad fraud, and viewability trends across display, video, mobile web, and […]
Quintis Sandalwood has appointed Illuminate as its global PR partner following a competitive pitch process. Proudly Australian, Quintis produces and markets Indian Sandalwood oil, logs, chips and powder products across the world to major companies in industries such as fragrance, aromatherapy, cosmetics, handicrafts and Traditional Chinese Medicine industries. Illuminate will be responsible for a global communications […]
Hopefully the weekend has given everyone enough time to recover from B&T’s 30 Under 30 awards and prepare themselves for our official photo dump! We shared some of the highlights last week, and now you can peruse all of the pictures taken on the night. Thank you to everyone for attending this year’s awards, and […]
Kinderling Kids Radio (Kinderling) has announced the completion of its move from DAB+, where it launched six years ago, to a direct-to-consumer streaming model, accessible online or through the Kinderling Kids iOS and Android app. The Parent Brand, the parent company of Kinderling Kids and Babyology, made the decision to shift as streaming and on-demand […]
Most people over 60 stay on top of their health with regular check-ups. Whether it’s eyes, prostate or breasts, they realise at their age it’s important. But one that gets ignored is hearing. They’d rather live with gradual hearing loss, and continually ask what, huh, pardon or sorry until it seriously impacts their life and […]
Creative communications agency Connecting Plots has been appointed by Casella Family Brands to handle the social media accounts for [yellow tail] wine in Australia. The win follows an audit of the Casella Family Brands social activities, which led to [yellow tail] rethinking its approach to social media and how it aligns with its overall marketing […]
v2food, has appointed HERO’s B.B.E as the lead strategic and creative agency for the brand following a competitive pitch process. v2food is an Australian pioneering food technology business with a global vision to feed the planet sustainably. After launching nationally in 2019, v2food has been on a mission to offer Australians an easy alternative to meat […]
Magnite (Nasdaq: MGNI), the largest independent sell-side advertising platform, today announced it has been working with Adform, the only independent global ad management platform covering all aspects of the digital campaign lifecycle, to scale first party identifiers in privacy-safe ways. With the pending elimination of third-party cookies, the industry must establish future-proof identity solutions for publishers and buyers.
The Commercial Producers Council is delighted to announce the appointment of Martin Box (pictured) as its new Co-Chair, effective immediately. Box, Head of Production at Airbag, joins Co-Chair Pip Smart, and fills the vacancy left by Lucas Jenner who steps aside from the Co-Chair role after four years of service, in accordance with the CPC’s […]