JCDecaux posts record sales but growth slow

Global outdoor advertising leader JCDecaux said Thursday it had posted record annual sales of 2.6 billion euros ($3.5 billion) but that growth had been dented by the recession in Europe.

"JCDecaux achieved another year of record revenues boosted by the ongoing strength of our emerging market business," chief executive Jean-Charles Decaux said in a statement.

"However, despite good resilience in France and a strong performance in the UK driven by the Olympics, the negative effect of the European recession continued to impact our organic growth," he added.

On a headline basis revenues grew by 6.5 percent, but organic growth was only 1.5 percent. In the fourth quarter organic growth was just 0.2 percent.

Transport advertising was the biggest gainer, posting 8.9 percent organic growth to 1.0 billion euros, while on the same basis street furniture dipped 1.9 percent to 1.2 billion euros and billboards dropped 4.8 percent to 439 million euros.

Europe remained the top region, but except for Britain, where sales were doped by the Olympic games, revenues fell when acquisitions and disposals plus exchange rate changes are stripped out.

Asia-Pacific sales grew by 9.6 percent on an organic basis to 23 percent of total revenue.

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