Arthur Sadoun
Arthur Sadoun

Publicis Groupe today reported an 8.2 percent plunge in H1 revenues to $4.9B due, in part, to a weak performance of its volatile Publicis Health Solutions contract sales organization, which visits doctors to sell products.

CEO Arthur Sadoun referred to “one specific operational bump” with PHS in North America which resulted in a $35M drop in revenues during the half.

Noting that Publicis is the only global PR/ad firm with a contract sales force capability, Sadoun remains committed to the business, which will require investing in health-related consulting, data and technology to provide clients with “cutting-edge expertise for their digital transformation.”

Organic growth dipped 0.4 percent during the half and 2.1 percent in Q2. Publicis reported a 2.3 percent drop to $1.4B in Q2 North American organic growth, while Europe slipped 3.6 percent to $744.

Sadoun expects Publicis to rebound during the second half, though he warns “it will not be an easy journey as we must transform ourselves while facing some strong market headwinds."