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Publicis Groupe delivers strong Q3 organic growth at 11.2%

Publicis Groupe has reported strong Q3 organic growth at +11.2%, with US at +10.9%, Europe at +10.0% and Asia at +12.5%, leading to full year guidance upgrade. Organic growth stood at between +8.5% and +9% as compared to +7% previously. Operating margin rate is now slightly above 17%. The group reported free cash flow close to €1.3 villion, at the high-end of the previous objective.

Epsilon reported a growth of +13%, while Publicis Sapient’s Q3 growth stood at +20% in the US, confirming outperformance.

Publicis Groupe’s Q3 2021 performance exceeded that of Q3 2019 by +5% m – the US at +8%, Europe fully recovering and Asia at +2% vis-a-vis 2019.

Strong account wins confirm the group’s leadership position in new business.

Commenting on the group’s performance, Arthur Sadoun, Chairman and CEO of Publicis Groupe, said, “In Q3, we delivered strong organic growth at +11.2%. All of our regions contributed to this performance with double-digit growth, notably the US, which grew +10.9%, Europe at +10% and Asia at +12.5%.”

He further said, “The continued outperformance of our data and tech capabilities once again demonstrated our ability to capture a disproportionate share of the shift in client investment towards digital media, commerce and DTC. This was particularly the case in the US, where Epsilon delivered +13% and Publicis Sapient was at +20%.”

The strength of Publicis Groupe’s model not only means it has fully recovered from the impact of the pandemic, but it has also allowed the group in Q3 to grow 5% versus 2019. On a two-year basis, Asia is at +2%, Europe has returned to pre-pandemic levels and the US is accelerating to +8%.

“Today, all of this means that we are in a position to upgrade our full year guidance for all our KPIs a second time this year. This is the case for organic growth, that we now anticipate at +8.5-9% from +7%. We are also revising our operating margin upwards, to slightly above 17%, while continuing to invest in future growth and talent. And at close to 1.3 billion Euros, our free cash flow is expected at the high end of our previous objective,” Sadoun added.

“Overall, 18 months after the beginning of the pandemic, we are emerging as a stronger group. Our differentiated go to market is allowing us to confirm our leadership position in new business. After wins in H1, including Samsung US, Stellantis globally, L’Oréal in China, to name just a few, Q3 has been a busy quarter, with new wins like Ferrero, Planet Fitness, TD Bank and Walmart,” he said.

Sadoun also mentioned about the major revolutions in the industry, such as the disappearance of third party cookies, the acceleration of advanced TV and retail media, and the ongoing rise of direct to consumer channels and how the group has equipped to respond to its clients’ needs and help them address these developments.

“Our platform organisation, supported by our shared services and Marcel is fit for the future of work,” Sadoun concluded.

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