Publicis Reports Slight Revenue, Earnings Growth

NEW YORK — Publicis Groupe revenue increased 2.4 percent to $1.18 billion in the first half of 2002 compared to the same time a year ago, the Paris-based holding company reported Tuesday. Organic growth declined 3.6 percent.

The company said that earnings before income taxes, depreciation and amortization, or Ebitda, reached $194 million, a two-percent boost over the first half of 2001. Its net profit before amortization of goodwill rose 15 percent to $85 million; net profit after amoritzation was up two percent to $55 million.

Publicis Groupe, expected to close its acquisition of Bcom3 in about 10 days, attributed the results to a restructuring undertaken in 2001. It also pointed to continued improvement in the profitability of one of its networks, Saatchi & Saatchi, and lower financing costs, which came out of the company’s refinancing at the end of 2001 and beginning of 2002.

Billings increased nearly 29 percent to $9.7 billion compared to the same time a year ago. In the first half, the holding company landed more than $800 million of net new business, which should start impacting group revenue in the fourth quarter and during 2003.