MSQ announces strong growth in 2021 H1 results

MSQ, the international marketing group, is on track to deliver its most successful year yet after reporting 35% year-on-year revenue growth and EBITDA up 66% in its H1 2021 results.

The group, which combines its multi-disciplinary group proposition with its 10 specialist agency offers, continued its market-leading growth with 30% like-for-like revenue compared to the previous year, excluding revenue following the acquisition of MBA.

The results cover the half year ending August 21 and see group revenue of £42.6 million and EBITDA of £5.8 million. The period marked an exciting new era for MSQ, with MBA (now part of MBAstack) and Be Heard agencies and agenda21 (now part of Walk-In Media), MMT Digital and Freemavens having joined the MSQ fold the previous year. The H1 figures do not include any contribution from Brave Spark, the creative production studio which MSQ acquired last month.

Peter Reid, Chief Executive of MSQ, said: “Our agile, client-centric model has helped us to continue the momentum that’s been built across MSQ over the past few years. We have built an ambitious, joined-up, truly international group with diverse talent and skillsets and are increasingly seeing clients embrace this model.

“These results are much more than a ‘Covid bounce’. We performed resiliently throughout 2020 and that gave us a platform to achieve significant growth in the first half of this year. It’s an extremely pleasing performance that will allow us to keep the momentum going throughout the second half of the year and beyond.”

MSQ has made a number of key investments this year to continue its ambitious growth plans. The business took ownership of a new London HQ, based in Covent Garden, and brought its integrated proposition to North America, with Deloitte’s Aaron Lang and Justin Cox joining a newly created regional team.

The group also invested heavily in its ESG agenda. Already the first global marketing group to be carbon negative, MSQ announced its intention to become a B-Corp in 2022. The business has already invested in a series of initiatives to reach a new goal of cutting emissions per head by a further 50% by 2024, signing up to The Million Tree Pledge, implementing a Staff Renewable Energy Scheme and – significantly for a company of its size – implementing Science Based Targets.

Other achievements during the period include cross-group wins such as Cancer Research UK, Visit Britain and AXA Investment Managers, whilst the group had its most successful awards showing ever, winning five Cannes Lions, WARC Effectiveness Gold and APG Gold, amongst 50+ other awards.