PR Operations at WPP Post Impressive Gains
Charting the future of public relations
Holmes Report
CEO

PR Operations at WPP Post Impressive Gains

Public relations was that fastest-growing part of WPP’s business in the first quarter of 2007. On a constant currency basis, public relations revenues were up 13 percent.

Paul Holmes

LONDON—Public relations was that fastest-growing part of WPP’s business in the first quarter of 2007, with public relations and public affairs revenues up by 4.2 percent, despite the impact of a weak dollar on the group’s revenues across every sector. On a constant currency basis, public relations—the company owns Burson-Marsteller, Cohn & Wolfe, GCI Group, Hill & Knowlton and Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide, among others—revenues were up by 13 percent.

Asia Pacific, Latin America, Africa and the Middle East continue to be the fastest growing regions, with revenues up almost 12 percent on a constant currency basis. North America remained strong with revenues up over 6 percent and continental Europe was up over 4 percent. The United Kingdom remained the slowest growing region, with revenues were up by 2 percent.

Overall, group revenues declined by 0.7 percent to £1.37 billion, although they were up by a healthy 6.3 percent on a constant currency basis. The difference reflects an 11 percent decline in the dollar against sterling over the course of the year. So U.S., revenues were down by 5.1 percent, even though they rose on a constant currency basis by 6.5 percent.

Public relations and public affairs now account for 10 percent of group revenues.

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