May 2020

Update on Ipsos activity during Covid-19 pandemic

Paris, 26 May 2020 – At the general meeting of shareholders, to be held on the morning of Thursday May 28th in Paris, the General Management of Ipsos will present the company’s activity as it has been developing since March 2020.

On April 23rd, Ipsos published its First Quarter revenue, which recorded a total growth of 1.5%, while indicating that it has been "operating since the third week of March in a very different market", marked by a steep decline in orders. The latter was explained by an unprecedented and significant wave of postponements and cancellations and the drop of new orders. In April 2020, the net contract balance decreased year-on-year by more than 60%, illustrating the brutal and massive consequences on the economic activity of the pandemic and the lockdown.

May 2020 marks the beginning of the lockdown easing, at least in the strictest form. Ipsos’ new orders, fueled partly by specific projects linked to Covid-19, are close to last year's level even if they will most likely remain slightly lower. Compared to April, the book of orders is less impacted by cancellations and postponements and should drop around 15% overall, a decrease 4 times lower than that observed in April.

For the first five months of 2020, the book of orders shows a decrease slightly above 10%. Over the same period, turnover has followed a very similar trend, which is consistent with the outlook at the beginning of the lockdown last March. It is too early to measure what will be Ipsos' activity in 2020.

It is however encouraging to note that, beyond the specific Covid-19 contracts won with public or private institutions, the dialogue has continued between Ipsos teams and our main 25 international clients managed through the program “Ipsos Global PartneRing”. With those clients, this resulted in orders higher for the past two weeks than in the same weeks of the previous year. This positive development follows a consecutive ten-week period of decline.

Many of the companies Ipsos works with wish to strengthen their innovation plans, have a better understanding of new customers’ behaviours and develop new communications. The market in which Ipsos operates wakes up as the reopening progresses. Every organisation, every institution needs to have fresh, relevant, accurate, understandable information on what is happening in Society, the new market developments and, ultimately, establish new connections with people and various audiences.

The second quarter is of course difficult. Despite the improvement of Ipsos’ performance in May, sales, income and margin will be lower than in 2019. However, if continued in June, the improvement of the activity in recent weeks should allow Ipsos to improve its performance in the second half.


Ipsos is the third largest market research company in the world, present in 90 markets and employing more than 18,000 people.

Our passionately curious research professionals, analysts and scientists have built unique multi-specialist capabilities that provide true understanding and powerful insights into the actions, opinions and motivations of citizens, consumers, patients, customers or employees. Our 75 business solutions are based on primary data coming from our surveys, social media monitoring, and qualitative or observational techniques.

“Game Changers” – our tagline – summarizes our ambition to help our 5,000 clients navigate with confidence our world of rapid change.

Founded in France in 1975, Ipsos is listed on the Euronext Paris since July 1, 1999.
The company is part of the SBF 120 and the Mid-60 index and is eligible for the Deferred Settlement Service (SRD).
ISIN code FR0000073298, Reuters ISOS.PA, Bloomberg IPS:FP