PARIS — Publicis Groupe has reported a second quarter of revenue growth and upgraded its annual growth forecasts for a second time.

The French holding company, whose communications agencies include MSL, Taylor Herring, and whose creative cohort includes Octopus Group, which it bought in February, said Q3 revenue was “ahead of expectations”, with an 11.2% increase on an organic basis compared with 2020 levels.

Publicis' Q3 results follows 17.1% growth in Q2 compared with the same period in 2020 – the quarter most hard-hit by the start of the pandemic and lockdowns. Compared to Q3 of 2019 the year before the pandemic, revenue was up 5%.

In his presentation, Publicis Groupe chairman and CEO Arthur Sadoun said: “In Q3 we delivered strong organic growth at 11.2%. All of our regions contributed to this performance with double-digit growth, notably the US, which grew 10.9%, Europe at 10% and Asia at 12.5%.

“The continued outperformance of our data and tech capabilities once again demonstrated our ability to capture a disproportionate share of the shift in client investment towards digital media, commerce and DTC. This was particularly the case in the US, where Epsilon delivered +13% and Publicis Sapient was at +20%.”

He said traditional creative and media services also grew in key markets, including in double digits in Europe: “The strength of our model not only means we have fully recovered from the impact of the pandemic, but it has also allowed us in Q3 to grow 5% versus 2019. On a two-year basis, Asia is at +2%, Europe has returned to pre-pandemic levels and the U.S is accelerating to +8%.”

Publicis Groupe’s numbers mirror double-digit group at WPP and IPG Dxtra in their latest Q2 results.

After the announcement, Publicis Groupe’s share price rose more than 3% to almost €59 – its highest level in more than three years.