WPP’s Q3 Revenues Soar 14.7% , But Aussie Operations Lag

WPP’s Q3 Revenues Soar 14.7% , But Aussie Operations Lag

WPP has followed its fellow holding companies, posting impressive Q3 numbers overnight.

The world’s biggest media company reported like-for-like growth was 6.9 per cent in the September quarter when compared to 2019.

Compared to 2020 – when ad spend was decimated by COVID-19 restrictions – it was up 14.7 per cent. The company is reporting revenues were up £3.24 billion ($A5.9 billion), up 9.1 per cent for the three months.

However, things were less rosy here in Australia where like-for-like growth was 2.4 per cent compared to the same quarter last year but was still down 11.2 per cent when the numbers were compared to 2019.

Highlights included:

  •  Q3 revenue up 9.1 per cent; LFL revenue up 14.7 per cent
  • Q3 LFL revenue less pass-through costs up 15.7 per cent; up 6.9 per cent LFL on Q3 2019
  • Top five markets Q3 LFL revenue less pass-through costs: US up 12.4 per cent; UK up 16.9 per cent; Germany up 34.5 per cent; Greater China up 18 per cent; Australia up 2.4 per cent
  • Top five markets Q3 LFL revenue less pass-through costs on 2019: US up 6.2 per cent; UK up 9.3 per cent; Germany up 32.1 per cent; Greater China down 1.7 per cent; Australia down 11.2 per cent
  • Continued new business momentum: $US1.7 billion won in Q3, $US4.6 billion net year-to-date
  • Ongoing strategic progress: merger of Finsbury Glover Hering and SVC, acquisition of Sataliain AI
  • Net debt £1.6 billion, down £1.0 billion year-on-year at 2021 exchange rates: continued goodworking capital management
  • £448 million share buyback year-to-date: £600 million completed by year end; continuation of buyback up to 2021 preliminary results
  • Full year 2021 guidance raised again: LFL revenue less pass-through costs 11.5-12 per cent, headline operating margin slightly above 14 per cent

Mark Read (main photo), chief executive officer of WPP, commented: “Our very strong performance goes well beyond a cyclical recovery, with like-for-like growth over 2019 at 6.9 per cent in the quarter. Clients across all sectors and geographies are making significant investments in marketing, particularly in digital media and ecommerce services. We are now above 2019 levels in all of our business lines, and with the actions we have taken over the last three years, we are even better positioned for growth.

“Our reshaped offer – which combines creativity with technology and data, through Choreograph, with the largest global media platform in GroupM – is proving its value for existing and new clients. This is reflected in the continuation of our longstanding and successful partnership with Unilever, and the growth of our relationship with Bayer. In addition, we are delighted to have won new assignments with Beiersdorf, L’Oréal, Sainsbury’s and TD Bank.

“We have also made strategic progress, creating the world’s leading board-level communications firm through the merger of Finsbury Glover Hering and SVC, and acquiring Satalia, a specialist in artificial intelligence. We continue to return excess capital to shareholders, buying back four per cent of our shares so far this year. With strong client demand, a clear strategic direction and a strong balance sheet, we are well positioned to continue our momentum into 2022 and beyond,” Read said




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Mark Read WPP

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