NEW YORK — IPG Dxtra's PR agencies reported high single-digit growth on an organic basis in Q1, continuing a pattern of improved quarter-by-quarter performance that re-started in 2021 after the division’s income dropped through the first year of the pandemic.

IPG Dxtra chairman and CEO Andy Polansky told PRovoke Media that the PR cohort, whose agencies include Weber Shandwick, Golin, Current Global and Rogers & Cowan PMK, had “performed very well”.

Overall, business was strong across global regions and was particularly robust in North America during the quarter, Polansky said: “growth was consistent across the board; we have a lot of momentum in our global markets.”

Automotive, CPG, financial services and healthcare – including the Dxtra Health Integrated Solutions cross-agency group – were among the highest performing sectors, as they were throughout 2021.

Polansky singled out Golin, which includes DeVries and Virgo Health and had double-digit growth for the first quarter, as one of the strongest agency groups, saying: “Golin has been a standout performer for some time, particularly with respect to new business.”

In Q1, Golin wins included being selected by Grubhub for a major new assignment, being named as agency of record for NAPA Auto Parts, and Asics expanding its work with the agency to include EMEA. In March, Golin promoted George Bryant to global chief creative officer.

Polansky said Weber Shandwick also had strong performance over the quarter, where it had double-digit growth across 20 offices and new business included work for GSK around chronic kidney disease and anaemia. Weber Shandwick recently hired Chris Deri as chief corporate affairs officer and president of a newly-formed C-suite advisory, as well as global head of analytics and intelligence Ridhi Malhotra.

Rogers & Cowan PMK also had strong growth over the quarter, with highlights including launching Apple TV series ‘They Call Me Magic’, while Current Global picked up new business for GSK and Hidden Valley, including unveiling a man-made diamond created by super-heating its Ranch dressing.

It was Polansky’s last earnings call before he plans to retire in June after a 38-year career with Interpublic Group and Weber Shandwick. He told PRovoke Media: “I’m super proud of what we’ve accomplished over these years, but I’m so invested and it’s all-consuming, so it’s quite a thing to shift gears. I’m looking forward to travelling and doing something more entrepreneurial outside the industry.”