Publicis Groupe, the world’s third largest advertising group, reported double-digit revenue growth for 2022, with net revenue reaching €12.6 billion, a 20% increase from 2021. The company’s organic revenue, which removes the impact of acquisitions, divestitures and currency fluctuations, was also up 10.1%, exceeding analyst expectations and Publicis’ own forecast of 8.5% growth. The fourth quarter saw a boost in net revenue by 18% to €3.46 billion, and organic revenue growth of 9.4%.
Despite the uncertain global economy, Publicis Groupe is forecasting single-digit growth for 2023, with organic growth estimated to be between 3% to 5%. The group has invested heavily in data and technology to keep up with changing client demands, which led to new business from companies such as McDonald’s and LVMH in 2022. The group’s digital marketing agencies, Epsilon and Sapient, now account for one-third of its revenue and half of its growth.
“What is certain is that, despite global uncertainties, we will continue to build on our three-year momentum,” said CEO Arthur Sadoun. Publicis plans to use €740 million of its free cash flow to increase its dividend to €2.90 a share, with €500 million to €600 million set aside for tech and data acquisitions, and €200 million for share buybacks.
Shares in Publicis Groupe increased by 5% after the company’s guidance was labeled as “very impressive” by J.P. Morgan, and is expected to give confidence to other companies such as WPP. Despite inflation, COVID-19 in China, and a slowdown in global advertising spending, Publicis Groupe’s success in the digital marketing sector has helped it beat expectations for 2022 and set a positive outlook for 2023.