- Net sales up +7.9% to €96.1m
- Gross margin growth of +9.6% to €78.9m
- Operational profitability resilient, with an EBITDA margin of 13.6% despite the intensity of investments
- Net income (Group share) of €5.0m, with a net margin of 6.4%
Paris, 29 September 2023 (6:00pm) – The DÉKUPLE Group, a cross-channel data marketing expert, is reporting its earnings for the first half of 2023.
Bertrand Laurioz, DÉKUPLE Group Chairman and CEO: “In a complex economic environment, we are successfully maintaining our trend for sustained growth, in line with our Ambition 2025 plan to become a European leader for data marketing.
During the first half of this year, our diversified model once again showed its resilience, with our net sales climbing +7.9% and our gross margin up +9.6%. This robust trend is supported by the strong growth in our Digital Marketing activities, which represented 58% of our first-half net sales. For reference, these activities generated 18% of the Group’s net sales in 2018.
We are maintaining high levels of profitability, with EBITDA of €10.7m, representing 13.6% of the gross margin, and net income (Group share) of €5.0m, representing 6.4% of the gross margin. Down from the previous year, these results take into account a high level of investment, not only in our Magazine business, with its significant commercial investments continuing to progress despite a challenging general press environment, but also in our Digital Marketing business, with the structuring investments required – further strengthening our partners and support teams, particularly for Consulting – with a view to securing future growth. These developments were partially offset by the improvement in results for our Insurance business.
As a data marketing specialist, we will continue to build on our growth while supporting brands with their marketing needs (consulting, agencies and solutions), in addition to further strengthening our own portfolios generating recurrent revenues (press and insurance) by maintaining our commercial investments.
The percentage of digital marketing within our activities will continue to ramp up with the development of our consulting activities, the continued growth in our engagement marketing and engineering activities, and the increasingly international profile of the solutions we offer.
We are focusing our development on marketing innovation powered by data and technology. To support our ambitions, we have solid financial resources in place and we will continue to closely monitor opportunities for external growth, in France and across Europe, in complementary areas with strong potential, as we were able to do in September with our acquisition of Le Nouveau Bélier, an advertising strategy consulting agency and retail expert.
Our 1,000 employees are fully committed to continue moving forward with our Group’s growth, supporting our clients and partners, with our Ambition 2025 to become the European leader for data marketing”.
FIRST-HALF KEY DEVELOPMENTS
During the first half of 2023, the DÉKUPLE Group achieved solid growth, driven by the continued expansion of its Digital Marketing activities, which represented 57.7% of consolidated net sales, compared with 50.8% one year ago. Their gross margin, up +35.9%, is benefiting from the data marketing market’s robust development and the growing appeal of the Group’s data marketing solutions that combine multiple areas of expertise to enable brands to improve their business performance.
The portfolio-based activities have maintained a significant level of commercial investments with a view to supporting their portfolio of subscriptions generating recurrent revenues. In a challenging general environment for the press industry, the Magazine business, down -8.2%, was affected by the contraction in purchasing power for French consumers and the increase in acquisition costs. Alongside this, the Insurance business consolidated its growth in relation to a high basis for comparison in 2022, which benefited from the successful development of the supplementary health offering.
Against a backdrop of a high level of investments, restated EBITDA came to €10.7m, down -14.7% from the previous year, to represent 13.6% of the half-year gross margin.
Operating income came to €7.1m, representing 9.0% of the half-year gross margin, compared with 13.4% for the first half of 2022. This change is linked primarily to i) the significant level of commercial investment maintained in the Magazine business, ii) the inclusion in results for the Digital Marketing offers of the structuring investments required to support their strong growth trend, and iii) the negative results recorded by the Spanish subsidiary. On the positive side, the subsidiary ADLP Assurances confirmed the improvement in its profitability.
After factoring in the tax expense (€2.2m), consolidated net income totaled €4.9m for the first half of 2023, down -28.7% from the first half of 2022.
After deducting minority interests, net income (Group share) totaled €5.0m, representing 6.4% of the half-year gross margin.
|(€m)||First half of 2023||First half of 2022||Change 2023/2022|
|% of gross margin||13.6%||17.5%|
|Income from ordinary operations||7.1||9.7||-26.7%|
|% of gross margin||9.0%||13.4%|
|% of gross margin||9.0%||13.4%|
|Net financial expenses / income||0.1||(0.1)|
|Share of net income from associates||(0.1)||(0.3)|
|Consolidated net income||4.9||6.9||-28.7%|
|% of gross margin||6.2%||9.6%|
|Net income (Group share)||5.0||6.6||-23.9%|
|% of gross margin||6.4%||9.1%|
FINANCIAL POSITION AT 30 JUNE 2023
The Group’s shareholders’ equity at 30 June 2023 is up +€0.4m to €37.7m, compared with €37.3m at 31 December 2022, primarily taking into account half-year earnings (+€4.9m), the ordinary dividend paid out in June this year (-€3.5m), and the impact of treasury shares and bonus share awards (-€1.1m).
The Group’s cash position at end-June 2023 represented €58.4m, compared with €58.5m at 31 December 2022 and €40.2m at 30 June 2022. Financial debt totaled €46.8m, compared with €50.9m at 31 December 2022, including commitments to buy out minority interests in the Group’s subsidiaries. It also includes €26.7m of bank borrowings set up before the crisis at favorable interest rates to support the Group’s development.
On 19 September, DÉKUPLE announced that it had acquired a majority stake in Le Nouveau Bélier, an advertising strategy consulting firm with Retail expertise (see press release concerning this operation).
Despite the uncertainty linked to the economic environment, the DÉKUPLE Group is continuing to roll out its Ambition 2025 strategy with a view to becoming a European leader for data marketing. With the financial resources in place, it is effectively positioned to continue with its commercial investments in its Magazine and Insurance activities to develop its portfolios of contracts generating recurrent revenues, while also supporting the development of its Digital Marketing solutions through organic and external growth.
The corporate and consolidated financial statements for the first half of 2023 were approved by the Board of Directors on 29 September 2023. The accounts have been subject to the usual limited review by the statutory auditors for half-year accounts. The half-year financial report is available on the company website at: https://www.dekuple.com/en/investors/news-documents-presentations/.
- 2023 third-quarter net sales on 27 November 2023 (before start of trading).
 EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization) is restated for the IFRS 2 impact of bonus share awards and the IFRS 16 impact relating to the restatement of lease charges.
 Net sales (determined in line with the French professional status for subscription sales) only include the amount of remuneration paid by magazine publishers; for subscription sales, net sales therefore correspond to a gross margin, deducting the cost of magazines sold from the amount of sales recorded. For acquisition and management commissions linked to sales of insurance policies, net sales comprise current and future commissions issued, acquired by the accounting reporting date, net of cancellations.
Following various financial elements reported by the subsidiaries, 2023 first-half net sales were adjusted by +€0.3m compared with the half-year net sales figure announced on 28 August 2023.
 For the digital marketing business, the gross margin represents the total amount of net sales (total invoices issued: fees, commissions and purchases charged back to customers) less the total amount of costs for external purchases made on behalf of customers. It is equal to net sales for the magazine and insurance business lines.