- As per WPP’s global press statement, VMLY&R and Wunderman Thompson were the two best-performing integrated agencies.
- Q2 LFL revenue less pass-through costs -15.1%: US -9.6%, UK -23.3%, Germany -11.6%, Greater China -3.1%, India -25.1%.
In India, WPP registered a 25.1% fall in LFL revenue less pass-through costs in Q2.
Mark Read, Chief Executive Officer, WPP said, “After two months in which our strategic progress could be measured by growth outside Greater China, the second quarter saw an inevitable downturn, with like-for-like revenue less pass-through costs declining by 15%, albeit better than our expectations. Assuming there is no second wave nor major lockdowns, the second quarter is expected to be the toughest period of the year, although we remain cautious on the speed of recovery.
Our strategic transformation remains on track but as COVID-19 accelerates the change in our sector, we are accelerating our plans. We continue to attract new talent, invest in technology and ecommerce, and train our people in the skills they need for the future, with more than 20,000 receiving accreditations from Adobe, Amazon, Facebook, Google and Salesforce this year.
“We are working with our clients to help them get back to business, adapt their marketing strategies at speed and reshape their operations for a new world. Brands are seeing increases in online sales of 100% and more, and we are supporting eight of our top ten clients on ecommerce strategies. Our new business record is industry-leading, at $4 billion in the first half, including wins from Intel, HSBC and Unilever, and our pipeline remains strong.
“With £4.7 billion of liquidity thanks to the Kantar transaction, and as we deliver against our cost savings targets, our financial position remains strong. As a result, we are able to return to paying our dividend, with an interim dividend of 10p for 2020.
“I would like to thank our people around the world, the vast majority of whom have been working from home and have shown great creativity, agility and collective spirit to support our clients in challenging times.”
Strategic progress, shareholder returns and outlook at WPP:
- Transformation delivering results: VMLY&R and Wunderman Thompson our two best-performing integrated agencies
- Strong new business performance, reflecting enhanced offer and improved collaboration
- Continued recognition of creativity and effectiveness: Effies winner for ninth successive year; Cannes Lions Agency Holding Company of the Decade
- 2019 final dividend cancelled to support lower leverage; share buyback still under review but intention to restart when environment stabilises; 10p 2020 interim dividend declared
- Current trading showing sequential improvement on Q2 but market remains volatile: July LFL revenue less pass-through costs -9.2%. US -6.1%, UK -10.5%, Germany -7.2%, Greater China -18.6%, India -15.5%
- Full year 2020 LFL revenue less pass-through costs growth and headline operating margin expected to be within the range of analysts’ expectations
- Capital markets event to update on strategic progress, long-term efficiency savings and capital allocation planned before 2020 year end