Anecdote 1: I've just timed a Debian Jessie single CPU hard disk based VM install with BTRFS as the filesystem, a GNOME 3 desktop where the user is auto logged in boot and where an autostart script records the time. Here are my rough systemd and sysvinit results (times are from after the kernel core finished to when the GNOME script ran):
sysvinit (apt-get install sysvinit-core)
First boot: 20 seconds
Second boot: 18 seconds
Third boot: 19 seconds
systemd (apt-get remove sysvinit-core)
First boot: 15 seconds
Second boot: 16 seconds
Third boot: 15 seconds
sysvinit averages 19 seconds, systemd averages 15.33 seconds. In this case it does appear that systemd booted the system faster.
Anecdote 2: Same as above but where the VM's disk is sitting wholly in RAM. Time for sysvinit dropped to 5 seconds and the time for systemd dropped to 4 seconds.
My personal guess is that the more you are running, the slower the disk the more likely systemd is to benefit you. You don't say how you did your comparison though or what type your "disks" were. If your comparison was between different versions of Linux distro then it could simply be that the previous version did less (which is always the fastest way to boot)...
Another anecdote: a few years back I saw Slackware systems at a University converted over to systemd. Boot times (which involved waiting for multiple NFS mounts) went from over three minutes to down to less than a minute because more of the waiting was done in parallel.