WPP Posts 2.9% Organic Growth As Latest Holding Company To Report Q1s

WPP Posts 2.9% Organic Growth As Latest Holding Company To Report Q1s

WPP has reported Q1 revenues of £3.46 billion ($A6.5 billion), which were up 11.9 per cent year on year. However, the numbers were well below rivals Publicis with 7.1 per cent and Omnicom with 5.2 per cent. However, Havas posted just 1.1 per cent.

CEO Mark Read (lead image) said the group remained on track to deliver its full-year guidance of three to five per cent organic growth on this revenue measure.

The numbers were cushioned thanks to Wavemaker nabbing Adobe’s $US250 million media spend in the US and an additional $US100 million in global customer engagement and retention duties.

Highlights of the numbers released overnight included:

  • Q1 revenue +11.9 per cent; LFL revenue +4.9 per cent
  • Q1 LFL revenue less pass-through costs +2.9 per cent, demonstrating continued momentum
  • $US1.5 billion net new business won, including from Adobe, Ford, Maruti Suzuki, Mondelēz and Swissport
  • WPP topped all three WARC rankings: Creative 100, Effective 100 and Media 100, for 2023
  • Acquisitions of Obviously and Goat to invest in influencer marketing expertise; and 3K Communication, a healthcare PR agency in Germany 
  • KKR to take minority investment in FGS Global at a valuation of $US1.425 billion
  • 2023 guidance reaffirmed: LFL revenue less pass-through costs growth expected to be 3-5 per cent; with headline operating margin around 15 per cent (excluding the impact of FX)

Read said of the numbers: “We have seen a positive start to the year, in line with expectations, reflecting continued spending by clients in communications, customer experience, commerce, data and technology to support their businesses and brands.

“We are continuing to strengthen the company – winning new clients, hiring new creative leadership, investing in our technology platforms and data, making three acquisitions in the growth areas of healthcare and influencer marketing and bringing in a minority partner to FGS Global. Our focus on AI over the last five years is paying off, with many examples of our work with clients, using the main AI platforms, in-market today. 

“We remain on track to deliver our full year guidance, thanks to the competitiveness of our offer and our role as a modern, trusted partner to clients in a world further disrupted by technology.”

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Mark Read WPP

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