Dentsu 2021 Growth Tops 13%; More Than $2B Earmarked For Tech, Transformation M&A

Tokyo-based Dentsu generated 13.1% organic growth for full-year 2021 with 14.2% growth in the fourth quarter, the company reported today.

The company’s biggest growth driver was helping clients with business transformation efforts.

To expand its capabilities in the sector Dentsu said it is earmarking between $2.1 billion and $2.6 billion over three years (2022-24) for acquisitions, with the goal of generating half of its revenues in that area over time.

Like other holding companies reporting year-end financials, Dentsu’s performance was well above pandemic-plagued 2020, when it suffered a full-year organic revenue decline of 11.1%, which followed a slight dip (1%) in 2019.

The company gave shoutouts to Dentsu Digital Japan and Merkle as being growth leaders for its domestic and international operations, respectively.



The company expects to generate 4% organic growth (which excludes the impact of M&A and currency fluctuations) this year, including 2% to 3% growth in Japan and 4% to 5% for its international operations.

For now, it also expects to sustain 4% to 5% growth through 2024.

The company’s Americas region posted 10.6% growth last year, and nearly 10% in the U.S.

Media was a “standout” performer in the region -- up 18% for the year.

Growth in its Europe, Middle East and Africa region reached 11.1% and 4.7% in the Asia-Pacific region. Full-year organic growth in Japan was 17.9%.

And Q4 growth in the Americas was even stronger at 15.1% with growth in the U.S. of 14.1%. The company acquired commerce business Livearea (now aligned with Merkle) in the third quarter of last year. Its Q4 revenues were up 30% Dentsu reported.

“This performance is testament to the return to growth in our industry, the cyclical recovery in advertising as well as continued investment clients are making in commerce & experience,” stated Hiroshi Igarashi, president and CEO, Dentsu Group Inc.

“In the structural growth area of customer transformation & technology,” Igarashi added, “we see a long period of investment as our clients look to understand their customers better than ever.” He said it’s the area that offers brands the “greatest opportunity” for growth as they emerge from the pandemic.

Next story loading loading..