S4 Capital releases twice-delayed 2021 results

Revenue growth was strong at the company, which promises changes to prevent investor confidence from being shaken.
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S4 Capital had a lot to be happy with in 2021, which may be what it needs to restore investor confidence following an “unacceptable” delay in releasing its full-year results.

The company’s report has been delayed twice after PwC had not been able to complete its work on time. Pandemic-related travel and resource issues were cited for the delay, though some finance experts pointed out that S4′s acquisition and merger spree likely made PwC’s work particularly complicated. S4 merged 11 companies through the course of 2021.

The delays and resulting uncertainty led to roughly £810 million being wiped from the company’s value on the stock market. In his letter to shareholders, chairman Martin Sorrell said S4 is working to improve its financial control, risk and governance structure, as well as making “several significant additions” to its financial teams and audit committee to prevent future delays.

The full-year results released Friday morning remain unaudited, but PwC consented to their release.

Revenue at S4 was up 52% on a like-for-like basis in 2021. Performance was particularly strong in its content practice, where net revenue grew 47%, with data and digital media growing by 35%. Though it is still a fraction of the size of S4′s other segments, net revenue in technology services grew 79%.

Regionally, net revenue in the Americas grew by 34%, with EMEA revenue up 64% and APAC up 49%.

For the full year, S4 is offering guidance of 25% like-for-like net revenue growth.

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