Elated with a solid Q4 results, Arthur Sadoun, Chairman and CEO of Publicis Groupe, has announced that the advertising and communications giant will repay the salary sacrifice made by its 6,000 senior staff members during Covid crisis and set aside a higher bonus pool to fairly reward and recognise its teams.
“When we saw at the beginning of the crisis how devastating the pandemic could be, we quickly acted to redefine our plans. This included a voluntary pay cut by around 6,000 of our managers, and a new set of objectives for the rest of the year. Thanks to the collective and extraordinary performance of our people in these difficult times, we have been able to post results that are above industry averages, allowing us to repay the salary sacrifice and set aside a higher bonus pool to fairly reward and recognize our teams,” Sadoun said.
Publicis Groupe outperformed the industry average in this year of exceptional crises by delivering a published growth of -0.9% in 2020 and organic growth at -6.3% for the year, with a Q4 ahead of market and our expectations at -3.9%.
Sadoun added, “This is the result of our ability to capture the shift in our clients’ investment towards digital channels, e-commerce and direct-to-consumer, which intensified throughout the year. It is particularly visible in the U.S. where Epsilon delivered growth of 5.5% in Q4, enabling our most important country to be slightly positive. This was also the case for Publicis Sapient.
Publicis gained market share by growing with its top 200 clients by 1.8%, and recorded a continued new business momentum with wins like Kraft-Heinz, Reckitt Benckiser, Pfizer, Visa, L’Oréal in China, TikTok and Sephora.
“Last but not least, we continued to post the best financial ratios of the industry with an operating margin rate of 16% and a free cash flow of close to 1.2 billion Euros while significantly reducing our net debt at around 800 million euros at year-end,” Sadoun added.