Recession sinks Japanese agency

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Japan's recession has claimed its first major ad agency. After more than a century in business, Osaka-based Mannensha filed for bankruptcy with liabilities of $133 million. Mannensha was Japan's 21st-largest agency, and had revenue of $332 million in the fiscal year ended March 31, 1998, but suffered about a 15% cut in revenue since that time. At the end of the current fiscal year, the company is expected to post a loss of about $3.36 million. Japanese ad agencies felt the pinch of the recession in 1998, as ad spending dipped 3.8% to $48.7 billion, the first dropoff in five years, according to a survey released by Dentsu. The Japanese government reported today that unemployment remained at a record high of 4.4% in January, for the third consecutive month.

Copyright March 1999, Crain Communications Inc.

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