Publicis Group's revenue up

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Holding company Publicis Group's full-year 2011 revenue increased 7.3% to $7.67 billion, compared with 2010, the company said in an earnings statement Feb. 9. The company's full-year net income also increased 14.1% to $791.3 million compared with the previous year, the Paris-based company said.

Publicis' digital work accounted for 30.6% of total revenue last year, compared to just 7.0% in 2006.

Fourth-quarter revenue increased 2.9% to $2.24 billion compared with the same period in 2010. The holding company saw growth in every geographical region, with North America enjoying a 5.9% percent increase in organic growth to $3.59 billion for the year, compared with 2010's $3.44 billion, making it the company's highest-grossing region.

The fastest-growing region was Latin America, which saw a 31.7% rise in revenue compared to the previous year, the company said.

“When you see that set of numbers, you can think about a lot of philosophical comments but I would prefer to say just simply, ‘Thank you to my teams, thank you to my clients. I'm very happy,” said Maurice Lévy, CEO of Publicis, in a video response to the earnings.

Lévy said he expected 2012 would offer advertising boosts for the major events of the Summer Olympics in London, the European Cup, and the U.S. elections. At the same time, he mentioned some issues of concern, including uncertainties in the Euro zone, which he called “a tough battlefield,” and sovereign debt.

He acknowledged the company was unhappy to lose General Motors as a client, which dropped Publicis last month, but said that the company's business acquisitions in the last year had been $7.9 billion.

“We have been wise enough to have the vision to sign agreements with Google, Microsoft and the likes,” said Lévy. “We are partnering with Facebook and AOL and Yahoo like no one else.”

Publicis Groupe owns and operates major networks including Publicis Worldwide, Leo Burnett, Rosetta, and Saatchi & Satchi. Lévy said that Publicis will continue to focus on digital and emerging markets in its future acquisition efforts, pointing to its public offer for Pixiepark, the German digital advertising agency.

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