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Global executive search revenue up 8.6%, industry group reports

November 12, 2014

Global executive search third-quarter revenue rose 8.6 percent year over year in the third quarter and overall search volume increased 8.7 percent, according to the Association of Executive Search Consultants' Q3 2014 state of the executive search industry report.

However, revenue edged down 2.1 percent compared to the second quarter of this year and the number of new searches started fell 2.4 percent from the prior quarter.

“Despite a slight decline in global revenues during the last quarter, the year-on-year figures for the worldwide executive search market continue to be very encouraging,” said AESC President Peter Felix. “They confirm the trend of the past 12 months which indicate a strong US market but more moderate demand in parts of Europe and Asia/Pacific.”

The industrial sector retained the largest global market share in new executive search activity with year-over-year and quarterly growth of 8.7 percent and 0.7 percent respectively, according to the report. The financial services industry held the second-largest executive search market share in the third quarter and was the only other industry, next to industrial, to report yearly and quarterly growth in new search starts; year-on-year growth was 18.6 percent and quarterly growth was 2.6 percent.

North America retained the largest worldwide market share in executive search activity at 44.4 percent and was the only major region surveyed to experience both yearly and quarterly growth in the number of new searches started in the third quarter of this year. EMEA held the second-largest worldwide executive search market share at 32.4 percent.

Yearly and quarterly growth in the number of new searches started in the third quarter:

  • North America: Up 11.3 percent year over year; up 1.4 percent from second quarter 2014
  • EMEA: Up 10.3 percent year over year; down 5.9 percent from second quarter 2014
  • Asia Pacific: Up 4 percent year over year; down 5.9 percent from second quarter 2014
  • Central and South America: Down 3.1 percent year over year;little change from second quarter 2014

The report was based on data from 1,402 executive search consultants in 46 countries.

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