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WPP full-year profits down 5.8%

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by Peter Charalambous

The world’s largest advertising group WPP has announced that revenue is down by 5.8 percent like-for-like in the first 3 months of 2009 and recovery is unlikely until 2010 after a trading update was released today.

Cuts in clients’ spending, as a result of tightening advertising and marketing budgets means that 2009 will be a difficult year for the group.

Sir Martin Sorrell’s company has said that the group is in the process of revising its own forecasts and bringing them into alignment with the rest of the industry with single digit decline being the norm as WPP shares fell 4 percent in this morning’s trading to 442.5p.

WPP employs 109,000 people, although so far this year, 3,500 have left as redundancies and unfilled jobs stack up.

Analysts had predicted a 4.5 percent revenue decline but with first quarter revenues at £2.2 billion this is actually an increase of 36 percent, although the buyout of market research firm Taylor Nelson Sofres, and the weak pound, affected the group’s revenue figures.

Public affairs and public relations sector and information, insight and consultancy have been most affected by the recession as the company won £960 million of new business, which is 13 percent less than last year.

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News posted: April 28, 2009

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