HH sales top £1.5bn

Jo Francis
Friday, December 2, 2022

Sales at HH Global have soared past the £1.5bn mark on the back of its string of acquisitions, and profitability at the group is also vastly improved.

HH Global Group: focus on tech-enabled creative production and procurement
HH Global Group: focus on tech-enabled creative production and procurement

The creative production and procurement services business took over its larger rival InnerWorkings in October 2020, so the fresh results mark the first full year of inclusion of that business. 

In the summer of 2021 HH also acquired Adare International for £11m and Dutch firms PaperChainManagement and PrintMediaServices in a £3m deal. It the autumn of last year the group also bought marketing execution platform Noosh for an initial £15m with £1m deferred. 

Sales at parent company HH Global Finance increased by nearly 70% to £1.55bn in the year to 31 March. 

Operating profits increased nearly seven-fold, from £8.55m to just over £59m. However, the prior year figure had been impacted by £18.8m of exceptional costs. 

The prior year’s pre-tax loss of £11.5m was completely reversed, with the group posting a pre-tax profit of £12.97m.

Acquisitions also fuelled a considerable increase in employees, to 4,011 (2021: 3,033).

HH Global Finance was incorporated in January 2020, with the trading results of HH Global Group included from 25 February 2020 and InnerWorkings from 1 October 2020. 

In the directors’ report, group CFO Kristian Elgey said that the significant growth in turnover and adjusted EBITA “reflects a combination of the inclusion of a full year’s results of InnerWorkings, delivery on related cost synergy plans, the impact of acquisitions made in the year and ongoing organic growth.”

The huge sales increase means HH Global will overtake Paragon Group and take the number one spot in the next Printweek Top 500, based on the current state of play. 

However, the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February has forced HH to shut down its £14m turnover business in Russia. 

“Since the crisis began, the group’s Russian operations have continued to run locally to meet the demands of clients, these being almost exclusively local companies of multinational groups which continued to operate, albeit on a significantly smaller scale,” HH explained. 

“At the start of the new financial year, with the conflict still ongoing, the decision was taken to wind down the group’s operations in Russia. No significant extra costs are expected to be incurred.”

HH Global also has a £1m turnover operation in Ukraine, which continues. 

The group’s clients include global brands such as Google, Unilever, Samsung, Coca-Cola, HP and Adidas,  and it works with more than 8,000 suppliers around the world. 

Founder and former majority shareholder Robert MacMillan became executive chairman after the business was acquired by Blackstone in 2020. 

The group remains on the lookout for further buys. 

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