NEWS9 February 2010

InfoGroup ends a challenging 2009 on a note of optimism

Financials North America

US— InfoGroup’s research division booked a quarter-on-quarter improvement in revenue for the final three months of 2009 – ending an otherwise difficult year on a note of optimism.

Fourth-quarter revenue for the MR business line was $24.7m, down 13% year-on-year but up $700,000 on the third quarter. The division has not seen sequential growth since Q2.

The MR group – which includes the agencies Opinion Research Corporation, NWC and Guideline – made a $7.7m operating loss in Q4 owing to a goodwill impairment charge. Sales for the full year were down 16% to $97.9m while operating loss was $8.5m.

InfoGroup revenue, including its data and services divisions, was $499.9m for 2009, down 15% on 2008.

CEO Bill Fairfield said the company had made “good progress in uncertain times” – citing the consolidation of its disparate businesses, the sell-off of the non-core social research business Macro International and a reduction in debt levels of $120m.

Fairfield said the foundations had also been laid for single-digit organic growth in 2010, whereas in the past the company had relied on growth through acquisitions.