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Asia-Pacific – Heidrick & Struggles CEO sees market conditions improving

04 November 2013

In an interview with Bloomberg Television today, Heidrick & Struggles interim CEO Jory Marino spoke about the company’s most recent financial results and how the company is faring in the global marketplace. 

“The global economy is starting to solidify and we’re getting a little bit more firm ground in various regions. What we’re seeing particularly in our European business, which has had several years of really soft earnings and so forth, we reported earnings on the 29th October, and Europe had the best quarter, +12% growth, in five quarters. So it was very good to see that.”

“Asia of course has been a big market for us. We’ve been dominant in this market for many years, we also saw growth in Asia, we’re up +7% which is terrific. That’s defined by not only search starts, that is confirmation with clients, but also in terms of our revenue for the year. In aggregate we’re doing fine. Total growth for us has been up +1% in the first 9 months, and +1% quarter–to-quarter.”

“Given the work that we do, 50% of our firm is focused in work at the top of the house; boards, CEOs, C-suite succession, and that’s pretty much a constant business. It’s the amplitude in our business in the next one or two levels down which is an important segment of the work we do. So if you look at our board and CEO work, for example, year-over-year our non-executive director recruitment is up +40%. Our CEO work, if you look at the known CEO searches that have gone out into the market place in the Fortune 1,000 we’ve captured 45% of that market share. That segment is certainly strong but the rest of it is cyclical, and where the amplitude in our revenues comes, it comes in the cycles.”

“You think what happened in 2008, I kind of describe it as the atomic bomb in global financial markets. It takes years to recover. For us at Heidrick & Struggles our financial services practice has done nicely, it’s done nicely both in the region (Asia-Pacific) and globally that business is up for us +3% year-over-year. So we’re starting to see some again firming of our ground in that market place.

“If you want a job in Asia, you should look to ANZ (Australia & New Zealand). ANZ is a big employment market place, China is a big employment marketplace, Hong Kong is a big employment marketplace. I say that those are the three primary growth areas in this side of the world.”

“If you think about China, China looks for executive talent that is coming from around the globe. Not only for multinationals that want to do business there but also for local companies as they build up their executive talent base. There you’ll see much more of a view around global talent. In Hong Kong you’ve got a wonderful employment base, a very diverse culture and country, and so you can be in-market and do quite well.”     

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