News Column

ITE Group Half-Year Pretax Profit More Than Quadruples

May 19, 2014

Samuel Agini

LONDON (Alliance News) - ITE Group PLC Monday said first-half pretax profit more than quadrupled due to a combination of revenue growth in its main markets and changes to the timing of certain events, as well as a contribution from the newly acquired investment in Chinese exhibition organsiser Sinostar, all of which offset currency weakness in emerging markets.

In a statement, the emerging markets trade exhibitions and conferences organiser said it made a GBP12.2 million pretax profit in the six months ended March 31, compared with GBP2.6 million in the corresponding period a year earlier.

Revenue increased to GBP71.2 million from GBP69.4 million, as ITE's main markets offset weaker exchange rates across most emerging market currencies and the company's decision to discontinue the large-but-low-margin events IMOB and TATEF in Turkey. Administrative expenses were reduced to GBP19.6 million from GBP23.6 million.

ITE said trading conditions over the first-half were mixed, with growth in Moscow and the Central Asian markets but with more challenging conditions being experienced in Russian regions, Ukraine and the UK.

ITE said it has booked revenues for the current financial year of GBP158 million as of May 16, down GBP174 million a year earlier. On a like-for-like basis this represents a decrease of 8%, although on a constant currency basis revenue would have been 5% ahead, the company said.

In addition, ITE said Mosbuild delivered a solid performance in April, the group's largest trading month, but in common with other construction businesses in Russia reported lower volumes than for last year's comparable event. Other events in April reported a mix of performances with the Moscow International Protection & Security event growing but TransRussia hit by a slowdown in one sector.

ITE said it is entering the second-half in a strong financial position, adding that it is "well placed" to continue to diversify its business into new market-leading positions and geographies. Despite the political uncertainty surrounding Russia and Ukraine, ITE said it remains confident in respect of the full-year outcome and future prospects.

"ITE has delivered a strong performance over the first half of the year with revenue growth in the group's main markets allied to a stronger biennial pattern in the first half of the year. Our recent acquisition of Beauty Eurasia in Turkey and a 50% investment stake in the Chinese Chinacoat/Surface Finishing exhibition represents more progress in achieving the group's strategic objectives," Chief Executive Russell Taylor said in a statement.

"Looking forward, we continue to seek opportunities to expand the business with investments that are consistent with our strategy of building market leading positions in higher growth markets. The group is in a strong financial position and operates a resilient business model. With good visibility on current year bookings, the board has confidence in the full year outcome," Taylor added.

ITE increased its interim dividend to 2.5 pence, from 2.3p.

ITE shares were Monday quoted at 220.25 pence, up 0.5%.

For more stories on investments and markets, please see HispanicBusiness' Finance Channel

Source: Alliance News