Dentsu Aegis Network delivers 4.3% organic growth

Strong performance in EMEA despite challenging times in France and UK.

Full-year 2018 results for Japanese advertising holding company Dentsu show the group was boosted by its international business, Dentsu Aegis Network.

Organic growth for Dentsu’s eponymous domestic business was just 2.1%, but Dentsu Aegis Network performed better with 4.3%.

Dentsu Aegis Network’s UK operations had a tough time in 2018, with the losses of clients including the UK government, GoCompare.com and the AA.

It was not clear how this impacted revenues at the national level, because Dentsu Aegis Network only published results for EMEA. These showed that the region contributed 7.4% organic growth in 2018 and a massive 12% in the final quarter of the year.

Switzerland, Spain, Italy, the Nordics and Germany all saw strong performances, but France was described as "challenging" and the UK as in need of "re-energising" under the new management team.

Dentsu as a whole reported a 7.2% rise in annual revenues to ¥1.02trn (£7.15bn), but operating profits fell 18.7% to ¥111.64bn (£784m).

It described its 2018 net new-business performance as "below average" at $1.6bn.

It also provided a forecast for 2019 revenue growth – 7.8% overall and 3.9% for Dentsu Aegis Network, and operating profit growth of 9.7% overall.

Dentsu Aegis Network is now led by executive chairman and acting chief executive Tim Andree after Jerry Buhlmann stepped down as chief executive at the end of 2018.

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