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Advantage Solutions 2023 revenue rises 4.3%; projects full-year 2024 growth

peter frost

Advantage Solutions said today it grew fourth-quarter adjusted earnings by 2% and full-year 2023 revenue by 4.3% to $4.2 billion, reflecting a trendline of improving financial performance amid a broad organizational transformation.

Company executives also said they project 2024 revenue and adjusted earnings before income taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) to grow low single digits.

Advantage, a leading provider of sales and marketing services to consumer goods manufacturers and retailers, booked fourth-quarter operating income of $46.2 million and adjusted EBITDA of $115 million, a 2% increase from the same quarter a year ago.

Excluding foreign exchange and divestitures, full-year 2023 revenue grew 6.8%, while adjusted EBITDA declined 1.7% to $424.3 million.

Advantage also said it reduced debt in 2023 by $168.2 million and repurchased $6.4 million of its outstanding shares.

“Our ongoing efforts to strengthen our culture, simplify our operations, improve our financial discipline and enhance our processes as a unified company resulted in solid fourth-quarter performance,” said Advantage CEO Dave Peacock. “I am incredibly proud of our team’s success as we delivered full-year revenue growth and Adjusted EBITDA results ahead of expectations.”

Advantage said its 2023 revenue growth was driven primarily by the continued recovery of in-store sampling and demonstration services, pricing realization and increased volume in its sales segment. Those gains were partially offset by a series of divestitures and an intentional client exit in late 2022.

Business transformation

Peacock, who joined Advantage a year ago, has taken a number of actions over that time to fortify the company’s long-range plan to create a more unified enterprise with a streamlined, simplified structure designed to drive greater collaboration, efficiency and accountability.

Among those moves:

Each of these moves, Peacock said in a call with investors, “will allow us to focus our efforts and reinvest in enhancing our capabilities – from talent to technology.”

Taken together, he said, they “will make Advantage stronger, more nimble, more competitive, and better enable us to drive our brand clients’ and retail customers’ businesses.”

Peacock said the company continues to evaluate its service offerings as it seeks to generate more cash to invest in the business and position Advantage for long-term success.