News Column

Robert Walters Expects Full-Year Profit To Be At Top End Of Hopes

July 7, 2014

Steve McGrath

LONDON (Alliance News) - Recruitment company Robert Walters PLC Monday said it expects to report full year pretax profit at the upper end of market expectations after gross profit rose 5% in the second quarter, buoyed by continued strong growth in the UK.

The company reported gross profit, or net fee income, of GBP53.9 million in the three months to June 30, up from GBP51.1 million a year earlier. It was hit by currency movements, saying that growth was 12% at constant exchange rates, marking a seventh consecutive quarter of growth at constant currencies.

It said it continued to perform well in London and the UK regions. Elsewhere, it called results from Europe robust, with Spain continuing to rebound and France experiencing growth in contract work even as permanent recruitment remains subdued.

In Asia Pacific, the company is doing well in Japan, Hong Kong, Malaysia and Thailand, but it said Australia remains tough, particularly in the big cities. Its smaller Australian offices returned to growth, it said.

It added that its recently opened operations in San Francisco and Dubai delivered excellent net fee income growth.

Its own headcount stood at 2.497 at the end of June, up from 2,307 at the end of December. Its net cash had grown to GBP14.7 million, from GBP6.9 million at the end of June, 2013.

"The performance is encouraging particularly given the challenging market conditions that continued to prevail in France and Australia, two of the Group's largest markets" said Chief Executive Robert Walters.

"With net fee income for the first half up 12% in constant currency, the group is confident that full year profit before taxation will be at the upper end of market expectations," he added.

Robert Walters will put out its full half-year results on August 1.

Robert Walters shares were up 1.4% at 316 pence Monday morning.

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Source: Alliance News

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