Havas returns to growth in UK, despite 'sharp downturn' in Europe

Havas, the marketing group, has reported flat revenue in the first three months of 2013, although BETC London's Bacardi win helped organic revenue grow 0.7% in the UK.

David Jones: global chief executive of Havas
David Jones: global chief executive of Havas

Havas revealed that first quarter revenues were €386m (£325.4m), down 0.3% year on year, but representing a decline of 0.9% on an organic basis.

In the UK, Havas "returned to growth" and reported organic revenue up 0.7% year on year, despite "budget cuts by certain clients". UK new business wins included the PR account for Ideal Standard and the Bacardi global creative business.

Havas said its French business reported organic growth of 1.2% in Q1 2013, despite a high 2012 baseline, driven largely by advertising, media and digital.

Although revenue in the rest of Europe declined by 2.4% year on year, the digital business "continued to perform well" and Germany and Turkey "continue to report good growth".

David Jones, the global chief executive of Havas, said: "The group held up well against the sharp downturn in the European market overall in the first quarter of 2013, achieving positive performances in the key markets of France and the UK.

"Business in North America slowed after outperforming the market in Q4 2012, but emerging markets remain solid. Digital, media, advertising and healthcare communication all made significant contributions to group performance."

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