NEWS8 June 2016

Revenue up 8% for Creston

Financials News UK

UK – Marketing communications group Creston has announced revenues increased 8% to £82.6m for the year ending 31 March 2016, on the back of strong new business performance and acquisitions.

Profits increased 1% to £10.1m and the group gained £15m of new business, including Vodafone, Sony Mobile, BA and Weetabix. Its share of international revenue increased – accounting for 34%, a 14% increase on the previous year.

Revenue for its communications & insight division increased by 12% to £62.9m ( 2015: £56.2 million) and like-for-like revenue increased 2% to £57.5 million ( 2015: £56.2 million). 

Earlier this year, Creston revised down projections for its fourth quarter due to client caution in light of an uncertain UK and global economic climate. But the company said since then it has exceeded the revised profit and earnings expectations. However it did say its insight companies had been particularly been affected by these factors, as well as the changing market research industry, which led to the closure of its fieldwork operation and a more difficult trading performance.

Creston made a number of investments across the year to fulfil its objective of becoming a global, full service group including acquiring Splendid and investing in numerous start-ups including marketing tech consultancy Navigate, data insight platform Real Data and passive metering panel, Reflected Life. It also formed a partnership with consumer trends and insight consultancy, Future Foundation.

Barrie Brien, group chief executive of Creston, said: “Over the past year we have made good progress against our five year strategic plan and the team has been working hard to integrate the strategy across the Unlimited Group.

“Headline PBIT grew by 1% and our cash conversion improved, resulting in a positive year end net cash position. The group was affected by volatility in some clients’ budgets and the Euro, but the company has increased the full year dividend by 5%, reflecting the fundamental good health of the business. Despite still having work to do, we are looking forward to continuing this progress in the coming year.”