WPP reported third quarter revenues jumped 9% to nearly £2.5B (about $4B), although the increase was a more modest 4.7% adjusted for acquisitions and currency fluctuations.
The Ireland-based advertising and PR conglomerate, owner of firms like Burson-Marsteller and Ogilvy PR Worldwide, said its PR and public affairs businesses were up 7.4% in Q3 – 6.4% for the first nine months -- on improvement in “almost all brands.” Ogilvy, Cohn & Wolfe and specialist Finsbury in the U.K., and HeringSchupenerin Germany were singled out for strong growth.
In U.S. dollars, Q3 PR/PA revenues were up 11.1% to $358M over 2010, and up 9.9 percent for the first nine months topping $1 billion in revenue.
CEO Martin Sorrell said the company to date has seen “little, if any” cutback in spending amid six global risks – fear of Euro contagion, lack of attention to the U.S. deficit, rising commodity prices, impact of Japan’s nuclear disaster, uncertainties from the Arab Spring, and the possible withdrawal of post-Lehman fiscal and monetary stimulus. He said a predicted slowdown in the U.S. and Western Europe has manifested.
“However, the continuous macro economic gloom and despair in the media and elsewhere must have some impact on both corporate and consumer confidence,” he said.
In dollars, North American revenue for WPP topped $1.3B on six percent growth in Q3.
WPP employs more than 112,000.