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Saturday 06th of March 2010
March 5, 2010    

WPP expects stability in 2010

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by Kay Murchie

The world’s largest advertising group WPP has seen an improvement in profits after a ‘brutal’ 2009.

The advertising giant said pre-tax profits had tumbled by 16% year-on-year to £812 million. However, this was better than the £780 million forecast.

Meanwhile, revenue grew by 16% to £8.7 billion, while like-for-like sales fell 8%.

The company was hit severely hard by the economic downturn and, as a result, reduced its headcount by 4% last year.

“Although 2009 was a brutal year overall the Group adjusted its cost base, after a difficult first six months, to falling like-for-like revenues,” the group said.

The group said it was now turning a corner and is recruiting again. It added that it expects 2010 to be a more stable year as major events that will contribute to growth this year include the Winter Olympic Games in Vancouver, the Asian games in Guangzhou, China and the FIFA World Cup in South Africa.

The group, which owns the Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide public relations company, also bought market research firm Taylor Nelson Sofres (TNS) in autumn 2008 for just over £1 billion.

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