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France – Groupe Crit plans US acquisitions, escaping Eurozone troubles

01 August 2012

Groupe Crit, the fifth largest Europe-based staffing firm in the region, is planning further acquisitions in the US this year to escape high unemployment rates in the eurozone and the European slowdown across several temporary staffing markets, the company’s deputy CEO said.

The French recruiter acquired the US staffing provider PeopleLink in September 2011 and with the US being the largest staffing market in the world, the company is looking to expand in the region.

Deputy CEO Nathalie Jaoui said in an interview with Reuters this week that the firm “would like a number of things to happen in 2012. We are in discussion with one or two companies.” She added that those companies are relatively small but showed solid levels of profitability.

Ms Jaoui said that acquisitions in the US would boost the company’s revenue this year, which posted a slight increase in second-quarter sales. In the first six months of the year temporary staffing grew marginally, by +0.8% to €610.7 million. This was mainly driven by performance of PeopleLink, the firm said.

But market conditions in France have become more challenging as temporary employment has been suffering from reduced activities. In the first six months of the year Groupe Crit saw its French revenue fall by -8.2% to € 517.3 million year-over-year.

Ms Jaoui also warned that the European economy is an ongoing concern. Yesterday, the EU’s statistics body (Eurostat) found that June unemployment in the eurozone had reached the highest level since records began. Joblessness in the euro countries was 11.2% with 17.8 million people being out of work in the month.  

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