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RNS
PageGroup plc  -  PAGE   

Half-year Report

Released 07:00 08-Aug-2018

RNS Number : 1220X
PageGroup plc
08 August 2018
 

 

 

8 August 2018

Half Year Results for the Period Ended 30 June 2018

 

PageGroup plc ("PageGroup"), the specialist professional recruitment company, announces its unaudited half year results for the period ended 30 June 2018.

 

Financial summary

(6 months to 30 June 2018)

2018

2017

Change

Change

CC*

Revenue

£751.6m

£673.1m

+11.7%

+12.8%

Gross profit

£396.0m

£352.0m

+12.5%

+14.2%

Operating profit

£67.2m

£56.9m

+18.1%

+18.8%

Profit before tax

£67.2m

£56.9m

+18.1%


Basic earnings per share

15.5p

13.1p

+18.3%


Diluted earnings per share

15.4p

13.1p

+17.6%







Interim dividend per share

4.10p

3.90p

+5.1%


Special dividend per share

12.73p

12.73p

 

 

 

HIGHLIGHTS

·       Group operating profit increased +18.8%* to £67.2m, +18.1% in reported rates

·       Investment in 829 (+16.6%) fee earners year-on-year

·       Adverse FX movements decreased reported gross profit by c. £6m and operating profit by c. £1m

·       Conversion rate** increased to 17.0% (H1 2017: 16.2%)

·       Strong Balance Sheet with net cash of £87.0m (H1 2017: £88.9m)

·       Interim dividend up 5.1% to 4.10 pence per share, totalling £13.1m

·       Special dividend of 12.73 pence per share, totalling £40.6m

 

 

* in constant currency at prior year rates

** operating profit as a percentage of gross profit

 

 

Commenting, Steve Ingham, Chief Executive Officer, said:

 

"PageGroup delivered an increase of 14.2%* in gross profit and 18.8%* in operating profit in the first half of 2018, with the Group's conversion rate rising to 17.0% from 16.2%. This reflected an improved business performance and operational efficiencies, as well as continued investment in new fee earners, two new offices, in Canberra and Chengdu, and a new country launch, in Vietnam.

 

"Adverse foreign exchange movements impacted our reported performance by c. £6m of gross profit and c. £1m of operating profit.

 

"In the past 12 months we have added 829 fee earners (+16.6%), with over half of these being into our five Large, High Potential markets. Each of these markets had a record first half in terms of gross profit, with collective growth accelerating to 23%, up from 12% in the first half of last year.

 

"We ended the first half of the year with both record fee earner and total headcount. Fee earner headcount grew 319 (+5.8%) in the first half, to a record level for the Group of 5,816 at 30 June 2018. We maintained our fee earner to operational support staff ratio at 78:22. Total headcount at the end of the first half was 7,457.

 

"We have announced an interim dividend of 4.10 pence per share, an increase of 5.1% over last year. In addition, in line with our policy of returning surplus capital to shareholders, we are pleased to announce today a special dividend of 12.73 pence per share (2017: 12.73 pence per share) totalling £40.6m, a fourth consecutive year of special dividends. Taking both dividend payments together, this amounts to a cash return to shareholders of £53.7m. Together with the 2017 final dividend paid in June of £27.4m, this represents a total of £81.1m returned to shareholders in 2018, or 25.43 pence per share.

 

"We are pleased with the Group's strong performance in the first half. However, there remain challenges, including Brexit in the UK, trading in Catalonia and forthcoming elections in Latin America.

 

"We will continue to focus on driving profitable growth as we progress towards our Vision of 10,000 headcount, £1bn of gross profit and £200m - £250m of operating profit, whilst being able to respond quickly to any changes in market conditions."

 

 

 

PageGroup will host a conference call, with on-line slide presentation, for analysts and investors at 8.30am on 8 August 2018, the details of which are below.

 

Link:

 

https://www.investis-live.com/pagegroup/5b4607c75821140a00e95e7a/kylk 

 

Please use the following dial-in number to join the conference:

 

United Kingdom (Local)

020 3936 2999

All other locations

+44 20 3936 2999

 

Please quote participant access code 91 98 55 to gain access to the call.

 

A presentation and recording to accompany the call will be posted on the PageGroup website during the course of the morning of 8 August 2018 at:

 

http://www.page.com/investors/investor-library/2018.aspx

 

Enquiries:

 

PageGroup

 

+44 (0)20 3077 8425

Steve Ingham, Chief Executive Officer

Kelvin Stagg, Chief Financial Officer






 

FTI Consulting

 

+44 (0)20 3727 1340

Richard Mountain / Susanne Yule


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

INTERIM MANAGEMENT REPORT

 

To the members of PageGroup plc

 

GROUP RESULTS

 

GROSS PROFIT


£m

Growth Rates


% of Group

H1 2018

H1 2017

Reported

CC

EMEA

49%

194.9

162.1

+20.3%

+18.6%

Asia Pacific

19%

74.1

66.7

+11.1%

+16.1%

UK

18%

69.7

73.0

-4.6%

-4.6%

Americas

14%

57.3

50.2

+14.2%

+24.9%

Total

100%

396.0

352.0

+12.5%

+14.2%







Permanent

77%

304.2

267.3

+13.8%

+16.1%

Temporary

23%

91.8

84.7

+8.4%

+8.3%

 

The Group's revenue for the six months ended 30 June 2018 increased 11.7% to £751.6m (2017: £673.1m) and gross profit increased 12.5% to £396.0m (2017: £352.0m). At constant currencies, the Group's revenue increased by 12.8% and gross profit by 14.2%. The Group's revenue mix between permanent and temporary placements was 41:59 (2017: 40:60) and for gross profit was 77:23 (2017: 76:24).

 

Revenue from temporary placements comprises the salaries of those placed, together with the margin charged. Overall, pricing has remained relatively stable across all regions.

 

Total headcount increased in the period by 428, while fee earner headcount grew by 319. We added a further 109 support staff mainly to support our strategic operational support programmes in the short term. We maintained our fee earner to operational support staff ratio at a record 78:22. We will continue to invest in our headcount in the second half in response to trading conditions and in line with our updated Page Vision.

 

The Group's organic growth model and profit-based team bonus ensures costs remain tightly controlled. 78% of first half costs were employee related, including salaries, bonuses, share-based long-term incentives, and training and relocation costs.

 

In total, administrative expenses in the first half increased 11.4% to £328.8m (2017: £295.1m), driven by increases in headcount being offset by foreign exchange movements. In constant currency administrative expenses were up 13.3% and operating profit increased 18.8% to £67.2m (2017: £56.9m), an increase of 18.1% at reported rates.

 

The Group views its conversion rate, which represents the ratio of operating profit to gross profit, as a key metric for the business. This conversion rate is affected by macro-economic conditions, the level of investment, particularly in fee earners and the degree of spare capacity within the business. The Group's conversion rate of 17.0% (2017:16.2%) was an improvement on H1 2017, driven by a strong performance in EMEA and a noticeable improvement in the Americas. Investment continued during the first half, with the addition of 319 new fee earners, two new offices, in Canberra and Chengdu, and a new country launch, with the opening of an office in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.

 

FOREIGN EXCHANGE

 

The Group was impacted adversely in the period by movements in foreign exchange rates, as Sterling strengthened against almost all of the currencies relevant to the Group's operations. In the first half, this decreased the Group's revenue, gross profit and operating profit when expressed in Sterling by c. £8m, c. £6m and c. £1m, respectively.

 

OTHER ITEMS

 

A net interest income of £nil (2017: £nil) reflected the consistent level of cash held this year compared to 2017 and the continuing low interest rate environment. Interest income of £0.2m on cash balances held through the period was offset by financial charges related to the Group's Invoice Discounting Facility and overdrafts used to support local operations.

 

The charge for taxation at the half year is 26.5% (2017: 28.2%). It is based on the full year underlying tax rate of around 27.5%, reduced by positive prior year items arising from tax returns filed in the half year to 30 June.

 

Basic earnings per share for the six months ended 30 June 2018 was 15.5p, an increase of 18.3% and diluted earnings per share was 15.4p, an increase of 17.6% (2017: basic earnings per share 13.1p; diluted earnings per share 13.1p).

 

CASH FLOW

 

The Group started the year with net cash of £95.6m. In the first half, £40.5m was generated from operations after funding an increase in working capital of £39.9m, mainly due to growth in our temporary and contracting business, which has a higher working capital requirement. Tax paid was £19.7m and net capital expenditure was £10.8m. During the first half, £19.1m was received from exercises of share options. £9.9m was spent on the purchase of shares in the Employee Benefit Trust to hedge exposures under share-based awards (2017: £nil) and dividends of £27.4m were paid to shareholders. As a result, the Group had net cash of £87.0m at 30 June 2018 (30 June 2017: £88.9m).

 

DIVIDENDS AND SHARE REPURCHASES

 

It is the Directors' intention to continue to finance the activities and development of the Group from retained earnings and to operate while maintaining a strong balance sheet position.

 

The Group's first use of cash is to satisfy operational and investment requirements, as well to hedge its liabilities under the Group's share plans. The level of cash required for this purpose will vary depending upon the revenue mix of geographies, permanent and temporary recruitment, and point in the economic cycle.

 

Our second use of cash is to make returns to shareholders by way of an ordinary dividend. Our policy is to grow the ordinary dividend over the course of the economic cycle in a way that we believe we can sustain the level of ordinary dividend payment during downturns, as well as increasing it during more prosperous times.

 

Cash generated in excess of these first two priorities will be returned to shareholders through supplementary returns, using special dividends and/or share buybacks.

 

The Board has announced an interim dividend of 4.10 pence per share, an increase of 5.1% over last year. In addition, in line with its policy of returning surplus capital to shareholders, the Group is pleased to announce today a special dividend of 12.73 pence per share or £40.6m (2017: 12.73 pence per share), making it a fourth consecutive year of special dividends. Taking both dividend payments together, this amounts to a cash return to shareholders of £53.7m. Together with the 2017 final dividend paid in June of £27.4m, this represents a total of £81.1m returned to shareholders in 2018.

 

This special dividend will be paid, as in previous years, at the same time as the interim dividend on 10 October 2018 to shareholders on the register as at 7 September 2018.

 

During the first half, £9.9m was spent on the purchase of shares into the Employee Benefit Trust to hedge exposures under share-based awards (2017: £nil).

 

All growth rates given below are in constant currency unless otherwise stated.

 

EUROPE, MIDDLE EAST AND AFRICA (EMEA)

 

EMEA

 £m

Growth rates

(49% of Group in H1 2018)

H1 2018

H1 2017

Reported

CC

Gross Profit

194.9

162.1

+20.3%

+18.6%

Operating Profit

40.9

31.4

+30.4%

+28.4%

Conversion Rate (%)

21.0%

19.4%



 

 

EMEA is the Group's largest region, contributing 49% of Group first half gross profit. In reported rates, revenue in the region increased by 20.6% to £389.7m (2017: £323.1m) and gross profit increased 20.3% to £194.9m (2017: £162.1m). In constant currency, revenue increased 18.7% on the first half of 2017 and gross profit increased by 18.6%.

 

The EMEA region performed strongly, with Michael Page and Page Personnel growing 20% and 17%, respectively. We continued our investment in France, which now represents a third of the region and 16% of the Group, by increasing fee earner headcount 21% year-on-year. Despite the disruption from strikes in Q2, gross profit grew by 17%. In Germany, one of our Large, High Potential markets, we grew 27%. We continued to invest in fee earners, up 90 or 30% year-on-year, particularly into the Contracting and Interim markets. Southern Europe grew 15%, with Italy up 25% and Spain up 7%, despite continued challenging trading conditions in Catalonia. Benelux grew 22%, with Belgium and the Netherlands up 37% and 16% respectively. The Middle East and Africa grew 14%, driven mainly by growth in UAE of 23%.

 

The 30.4% increase in operating profit for the first half of 2018 to £40.9m (2017: £31.4m) and improvement in the conversion rate to 21.0% (2017: 19.4%) was driven by a combination of improved fee earner productivity and a reduced cost per fee earner. This reduction in cost per fee earner was a combination of adding more junior, lower cost fee earners, as well as efficiency benefits from our European shared service centre. Headcount across the region increased 179 (+6.0%) in the first half to 3,175 at the end of June 2018 (2,996 at 31 December 2017).

 

ASIA PACIFIC

 

Asia Pacific

 £m

Growth rates

(19% of Group in H1 2018)

H1 2018

H1 2017

Reported

CC

Gross Profit

74.1

66.7

+11.1%

+16.1%

Operating Profit

9.0

11.3

-20.5%

-15.9%

Conversion Rate (%)

12.1%

17.0%



 

In Asia Pacific, representing 19% of Group first half gross profit, revenue increased 7.5% in reported rates to £125.6m (2017: £116.9m), and gross profit increased 11.1% to £74.1m (2017: £66.7m). In constant currency, revenue increased 13.0% in the first half and gross profit increased by 16.1%.

 

In Asia, we have two of our Large, High Potential markets, Greater China and South East Asia, as well as two other large recruitment markets, India and Japan, in which we continue to invest heavily. As a result, we grew fee earner headcount by 36% year-on-year, which in part helped us to achieve gross profit growth of 20%. In addition, in the Asia Pacific region we have opened 3 new offices, Chengdu, in the west of China, Canberra in Australia and our first office in Vietnam, in Ho Chi Minh City.

 

These investments have accelerated growth in the first half from Q1 to Q2 and have positioned us for continued growth. However, in the short-term these investments have reduced our conversion rate to 12.1% in H1 2018 from 17.0% in H1 2017. Headcount across the region increased by 128 (8.4%) to 1,660 at the end of June 2018 (1,532 at 31 December 2017).

 

UNITED KINGDOM

 

UK

 £m

Growth rates

(18% of Group in H1 2018)

H1 2018

H1 2017


Gross Profit

69.7

73.0

-4.6%

Operating Profit

10.5

8.7

+20.1%

Conversion Rate (%)

15.0%

11.9%


 

In the UK, representing 18% of Group first half gross profit, revenue declined -3.5% to £155.0m (2017: £160.7m), and gross profit declined -4.6% to £69.7m (2017: £73.0m), with Brexit related uncertainty continuing to impact decision-making from clients and candidates at the more senior levels of the market. Page Personnel, which has a higher proportion of temporary recruitment, grew 3%, while Michael Page, which is focused on more senior candidates, declined -7%.

 

Operating profit increased by 20.1% to £10.5m (2017: £8.7m), with the conversion rate increasing to 15.0% (2017: 11.9%). As noted last year, our H1 2017 UK conversion rate was impacted by around 3 percentage points by a particularly high share plan charge that, due to the proportion of senior management who are based in the UK, disproportionately impacted the region's conversion rate. In H1 2018, we also restructured our business in the UK, moving from a discipline to a regional basis, in order to more closely align us with our customers. While not the driver of the restructure, it also resulted in a reduction in our UK management team.

 

Headcount decreased by 12 (0.9%) during the first half of 2018 to 1,395 at the end of June 2018 (1,407 at 31 December 2017).

 

 

 

THE AMERICAS

 

Americas

 £m

Growth rates

(14% of Group in H1 2018)

H1 2018

H1 2017

Reported

CC

Gross Profit

57.3

50.2

+14.2%

+24.9%

Operating Profit

6.8

5.5

+24.0%

+32.7%

Conversion Rate (%)

11.9%

11.0%



 

In the Americas, representing 14% of Group first half gross profit, revenue increased 12.1% in reported rates to £81.3m (2017: £72.5m), while gross profit increased 14.2% to £57.3m (2017: £50.2m). In constant currency, revenue increased by 22.6% and gross profit increased by 24.9%.

 

North America saw growth of 22% in both the US and Canada. In the US, we continued to invest, with fee earner headcount up 32 or 9% in H1, following the increase of 64 or 21% in 2017. We saw particularly strong performances from our offices outside of New York, which now represent 54% of the US, a proportion that has grown by around 50% since 2015, and which grew 31% collectively.

 

In Latin America, we increased fee earner headcount by 24% year-on-year and grew 29%. This investment was spread across the region, including the four countries outside of Brazil and Mexico, being Argentina, Chile, Colombia and Peru, where we now have a total headcount of over 300 and grew 43%, collectively. Elsewhere, Brazil grew 17% as market conditions continued to improve. In Mexico, our largest business in the region in terms of fee earners, we grew 26%.

 

Headcount in the Americas was up 133 (12.2%) in the first half, to 1,227 at the end of June 2018 (1,094 at 31 December 2017). Operating profit increased by 24.0% to £6.8m (2017: £5.5m), with an increase in the conversion rate to 11.9% (2017: 11.0%),  due primarily to the increase in gross profit growth throughout the region.

 

KEY PERFORMANCE INDICATORS ("KPIs")

 

We measure our progress against our strategic objectives using the following key performance indicators:

 

KPI

Definition, method of calculation and analysis



Gross profit growth

How measured: Gross profit represents revenue less cost of sales and consists of the total placement fees of permanent candidates, the margin earned on the placement of temporary candidates and the margin on advertising income, i.e. it represents net fee income. The measure used is the increase or decrease in gross profit as a percentage of the prior year gross profit.

 

Why it's important: The growth of gross profit relative to the previous year is an indicator of the growth of the net fees from the business as a whole. It demonstrates whether we are in line with our strategy to grow the business.

 

How we performed in H1 2018: With strong growth in many of our markets, gross profit in H1 2018 increased by 14.2% in constant currency, although this decreased to 12.5% at reported rates after the impact of foreign exchange (H1 2017: 8.3% in constant currency, 17.7% in reported rates).

 

Relevant strategic objective: Organic growth

Gross profit diversification

How measured: Total gross profit from a) geographic regions outside the UK; and b) disciplines outside of Accounting and Financial Services, each expressed as a percentage of total gross profit.

 

Why it's important: These percentages give an indication of how the business has diversified its revenue streams away from its historic concentrations in the UK and from the Accounting and Financial Services discipline.

 

How we performed in H1 2018: Geographies: the percentage increased to 82.4% from 79.3% in 2017, demonstrating further diversification. This increase reflected the economic recovery felt in Continental Europe, along with the strengthening of Sterling. 

Disciplines: the percentage increased to 65.5% (2017: 63.1%), with growth of 6% within Accounting and Financial Services, compared to 19% elsewhere, with a particularly strong result from our Technical disciplines, up 26%.

 

Relevant strategic objective: Diversification

Ratio of gross profits generated from permanent and temporary placements

How measured: Gross profit from each type of placement expressed as a percentage of total gross profit.

 

Why it's important: This ratio helps us to understand where we are in the economic cycle since the temporary market tends to be more resilient when the economy is weak, although in several of our core strategic markets, working in a temporary role or as a contractor or interim employee, is not currently normal practice, for example mainland China.

 

How we performed in H1 2018: 77% of our gross profit was generated from permanent placements, marginally above the 76% in 2017.

 

Relevant strategic objective: Organic growth

Gross profit per fee earner

How measured: Gross profit for the year divided by the average number of fee earners in the year.

 

Why it's important: This is a key indicator of productivity.

 

How we performed in H1 2018: Gross profit per fee earner was £69.2k in H1 2018 compared to £72.3k in H1 2017, though in constant currency H1 2018 productivity is slightly higher at £70.3k. The lower productivity in H1 2018 reflects the level of fee earner headcount investment.

 

Relevant strategic objective: Organic growth

Conversion rate

How measured: Operating profit before interest and taxation (EBIT) as a percentage of gross profit.

 

Why it's important: This demonstrates the Group's effectiveness at controlling the costs and expenses associated with its normal business operations. It will be impacted by the level of productivity and the level of investment for future growth.

 

How we performed in H1 2018: Operating profit as a percentage of gross profit increased to 17.0% in 2018, up from 16.2% in the prior year, driven by the improvement in trading conditions in the majority of our regions, as well as operational efficiencies.

 

Relevant strategic objective: Build for the long-term

Basic earnings per share before exceptional items

How measured: Profit for the year attributable to the Group's equity shareholders, divided by the weighted average number of shares in issue during the year.

 

Why it's important: This measures the overall profitability of the Group.

 

How we performed in H1 2018: Earnings per share (EPS) in H1 2018 was 15.5p, an 18.3% improvement on the EPS in 2017 of 13.1p.

 

Relevant strategic objective: Build for the long-term, organic growth

Fee-earner: operational support staff headcount ratio

How measured: The percentage of fee-earners compared to operational support staff at the period-end, expressed as a ratio.

 

Why it's important: This reflects the operational efficiency in the business in terms of our ability to grow the revenue-generating platform at a faster rate than the staff needed to support this growth.

 

How we performed in H1 2018: The ratio continued at a record 78:22 (H1 2017: 77:23) with 319 fee earners added in 2018. Support staff increased by 109, mainly short-term to support our strategic operational support programmes.

 

Relevant strategic objective: Sustainable growth

Fee-earner headcount growth

How measured: Number of fee-earners and directors involved in revenue-generating activities at the period end, expressed as the percentage change compared to the prior year.

 

Why it's important: Growth in fee-earners is a guide to our confidence in the business and macro-economic outlook, as it reflects expectations as to the level of future demand above the existing capacity within the business.

 

How we performed in H1 2018: We added 319 fee earners in H1 2018 (H1 2017: 276), reflecting our continued confidence in our markets, as we invested in our Large, High Potential markets as well as those markets experiencing strong growth.

 

Relevant strategic objective: Sustainable growth

Net cash

How measured: Cash and short-term deposits less bank overdrafts and loans.

 

Why it's important: The level of net cash is a key measure of our success in managing our working capital and determines our ability to reinvest in the business and to return cash to shareholders.

 

How we performed in H1 2018: Net cash at 30 June 2018 was £87.0m (H1 2017: £88.9m). This was as a result of share purchases into the Employee Benefit Trust of £9.9m in H1 2018 that were not incurred in H1 2017, offset by £19.1m received in H1 2018 as a result of the exercise of share options, compared to £5.7m in H1 2017, with the balance principally driven by movements in working capital.  

 

Relevant strategic objective: Build for the long-term

 

The source of data and calculation methods year-on-year are on a consistent basis. The movements in KPIs are in line with expectations. Disclosure for GHG emissions and People KPIs is provided annually.

 

PRINCIPAL RISKS AND UNCERTAINTIES

 

The management of the business and the execution of the Group's strategy are subject to a number of risks. The main risks that PageGroup believes could potentially impact the Group's operating and financial performance for the remainder of the financial year remain those as set out in the Annual Report and Accounts for the year ending 31 December 2017 on pages 35 to 39.

 

There have been no changes to these risk categories in the first half to 30 June 2018. However, there remains a degree of uncertainty in the UK as a result of Brexit.

 

We have a proven track record of being able to manage our headcount and costs effectively throughout the economic cycle and it should be noted that the UK is now only 18% of the Group, but a more resilient market due to its size and maturity. We also expect our other markets to continue to remain positive. In light of these mixed trading conditions, we will continue to focus on activity levels, adjusting headcount during the second half to react to market conditions. As always, we remain focused on driving profitable growth, whilst remaining able to respond quickly and effectively to any changes in market conditions.

 

 

TREASURY MANAGEMENT, BANK FACILITIES AND CURRENCY RISK

 

It is the Directors' intention to continue to finance the activities and development of the Group from retained earnings and to operate while maintaining a strong balance sheet position.

 

The Group's first use of cash is to satisfy operational and investment requirements, as well as hedging its liabilities under the Group's share plans. The level of cash required for this purpose will vary depending upon the revenue mix of geographies, permanent and temporary recruitment, and point in the economic cycle.

 

Our second use of cash is to make returns to shareholders by way of an ordinary dividend. Our policy is to grow the ordinary dividend over the course of the economic cycle in a way that we believe we can sustain the level of ordinary dividend payment during downturns, as well as increasing it during more prosperous times.

 

Cash generated in excess of these first two priorities will be returned to shareholders through supplementary returns, using special dividends and/or share buybacks.

 

Cash surpluses are invested in short-term deposits, with any working capital requirements being provided from Group cash resources, Group facilities, or by local overdraft facilities. The Group has a multi-currency notional cash pool based in the UK Group Treasury subsidiary and a cash concentration structure between the UK and  Eurozone subsidiaries. The structure facilitates interest and balance compensation of cash and bank overdrafts. The Group has an Invoice Financing facility with HSBC Bank, the availability of which is limited to the level of UK trade receivable available for financing. This facility is subject to conventional banking covenants.

 

The main functional currencies of the Group are Sterling, Euro, Australian Dollar, Swiss Franc, Chinese Renminbi, Singapore and US Dollars. The Group does not have material exposure to foreign denominated monetary assets and liabilities.

 

In certain cases, where the Group gives or receives short-term loans to and from other Group companies with different reporting currencies, it may use short-dated foreign exchange swap derivatives financial instruments to manage the currency and interest rate exposure that arises on these loans. The Group has entered into hedges to cover its investment in foreign entities in the US and Canada.

 

GOING CONCERN

 

The Board has undertaken a recent and thorough review of the Group's forecasts and associated risks and sensitivities. Despite the uncertainty in the economy and its inherent risk and impact on the business, the Board has concluded, given the level of cash in the business and Group borrowing facilities, the geographical and discipline diversification, limited concentration risk, as well as the ability to manage the cost base, that the Group has adequate resources to continue in operational existence for the foreseeable future, being a period of at least 12 months from the date of this announcement.

 

CAUTIONARY STATEMENT

 

This Interim Management Report ("IMR") has been prepared solely to provide additional information to shareholders to assess the Group's strategies and the potential for those strategies to succeed. The IMR should not be relied on by any other party or for any other purpose. This IMR contains certain forward-looking statements. These statements are made by the directors in good faith based on the information available to them up to the time of their approval of this report and such statements should be treated with caution due to the inherent uncertainties, including both economic and business risk factors, underlying any such forward-looking information.

 

This IMR has been prepared for the Group as a whole and therefore gives greater emphasis to those matters that are significant to PageGroup plc and its subsidiary undertakings when viewed as a whole.

 

 

 

 

Page House

The Bourne Business Park

1 Dashwood Lang Road

Addlestone

Weybridge

Surrey

KT15 2QW

 

By order of the Board,

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Steve Ingham

Kelvin Stagg

Chief Executive Officer

Chief Financial Officer



7 August 2018

7 August 2018

 

 



INDEPENDENT REVIEW REPORT TO PAGEGROUP PLC

 

Introduction

 

We have been engaged by the Company to review the condensed set of financial statements in the half-yearly financial report for the six months ended 30 June 2018 which comprises the condensed consolidated income statement, the condensed consolidated statement of comprehensive income, the condensed consolidated balance sheet, the condensed consolidated statement of changes in equity, the condensed consolidated statement of cash flows and the related notes 1 to 13. We have read the other information contained in the half yearly financial report and considered whether it contains any apparent misstatements or material inconsistencies with the information in the condensed set of financial statements.

 

This report is made solely to the company in accordance with guidance contained in International Standard on Review Engagements 2410 (UK and Ireland) "Review of Interim Financial Information Performed by the Independent Auditor of the Entity" issued by the Auditing Practices Board. To the fullest extent permitted by law, we do not accept or assume responsibility to anyone other than the company, for our work, for this report, or for the conclusions we have formed.

 

Directors' Responsibilities

 

The half-yearly financial report is the responsibility of, and has been approved by, the directors. The directors are responsible for preparing the half-yearly financial report in accordance with the Disclosure Guidance and Transparency Rules of the United Kingdom's Financial Conduct Authority.

 

As disclosed in note 2, the annual financial statements of the Group are prepared in accordance with IFRSs as adopted by the European Union. The condensed set of financial statements included in this half-yearly financial report has been prepared in accordance with International Accounting Standard 34, "Interim Financial Reporting", as adopted by the European Union.

 

Our Responsibility

 

Our responsibility is to express to the Company a conclusion on the condensed set of financial statements in the half-yearly financial report based on our review.

 

Scope of Review

 

We conducted our review in accordance with International Standard on Review Engagements (UK and Ireland) 2410, "Review of Interim Financial Information Performed by the Independent Auditor of the Entity" issued by the Auditing Practices Board for use in the United Kingdom. A review of interim financial information consists of making enquiries, primarily of persons responsible for financial and accounting matters, and applying analytical and other review procedures. A review is substantially less in scope than an audit conducted in accordance with International Standards on Auditing (UK) and consequently does not enable us to obtain assurance that we would become aware of all significant matters that might be identified in an audit. Accordingly, we do not express an audit opinion.

 

Conclusion

 

Based on our review, nothing has come to our attention that causes us to believe that the condensed set of financial statements in the half-yearly financial report for the six months ended 30 June 2018 is not prepared, in all material respects, in accordance with International Accounting Standard 34 as adopted by the European Union and the Disclosure Guidance and Transparency Rules of the United Kingdom's Financial Conduct Authority.

 

 

Ernst & Young LLP

London

7 August 2018

Condensed Consolidated Income Statement

For the six months ended 30 June 2018

 




Six months ended

Year ended

 




30 June


30 June


31 December




2018


2017


2017




Unaudited


Unaudited


Audited


Note


£'000


£'000


£'000









Revenue

3


751,580


673,146


1,371,534

Cost of sales



(355,561)


(321,159)


(659,966)

Gross profit

3


396,019


351,987


711,568

Administrative expenses



(328,795)


(295,067)


(593,246)

Operating profit

3


67,224


56,920


118,322

Financial income

4


182


148


229

Financial expenses

4


(176)


(120)


(389)

Profit before tax

3


67,230


56,948


118,162

Income tax expense

5


(17,818)


(16,036)


(35,082)

Profit for the period



49,412


40,912


83,080









Attributable to:








Owners of the parent



49,412


40,912


83,080









Earnings per share








Basic earnings per share (pence)

8


15.5


13.1


26.5

Diluted earnings per share (pence)

8


15.4


13.1


26.4

 

The above results all relate to continuing operations

 

 

Condensed Consolidated Statement of Comprehensive Income

For the six months ended 30 June 2018

 


Six months ended

Year ended


30 June


30 June


31 December


2018


2017


2017


Unaudited


Unaudited


Audited


£'000


£'000


£'000







Profit for the period

49,412


40,912


83,080







Other comprehensive (loss)/income for the period






Items that may subsequently be reclassified to profit and loss:












Currency translation differences

(525)


(1,935)


(2,888)

(Loss)/gain on hedging instruments

(612)


706


1,340







Total comprehensive income for the period

48,275


39,683


81,532







Attributable to:






Owners of the parent

48,275


39,683


81,532



 

Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheet

As at 30 June 2018

 




30 June


30 June


31 December




2018


2017


2017




Unaudited


Unaudited


Audited


Note


£'000


£'000


£'000

Non-current assets








Property, plant and equipment

9


31,868


29,541


30,158

Intangible assets - Goodwill and other intangible



1,681


1,677


1,685

                            - Computer software



31,697


35,375


32,473

Deferred tax assets



17,100


14,616


14,637

Other receivables

10


11,680


9,110


10,513




94,026


90,319


89,466

Current assets








Trade and other receivables

10


335,033


278,239


299,089

Current tax receivable



15,617


16,488


15,652

Cash and cash equivalents

13


87,048


88,946


95,605




437,698


383,673


410,346









Total assets

3


531,724


473,992


499,812









Current liabilities








Trade and other payables

11


(187,625)


(173,524)


(187,730)

Current tax payable



(21,695)


(17,325)


(22,166)




(209,320)


(190,849)


(209,896)









Net current assets



228,378


192,824


200,450









Non-current liabilities








Other payables

11


(16,702)


(12,334)


(19,489)

Deferred tax liabilities



(1,339)


(1,081)


(370)




(18,041)


(13,415)


(19,859)

















Total liabilities

3


(227,361)


(204,264)


(229,755)









Net assets



304,363


269,728


270,057









Capital and reserves








Called-up share capital



3,279


3,276


3,268

Share premium



96,676


92,054


92,677

Capital redemption reserve



932


932


932

Reserve for shares held in the employee benefit trust



(53,427)


(65,780)


(58,931)

Currency translation reserve



29,333


30,811


29,858

Retained earnings



227,570


208,435


202,253

Total equity



304,363


269,728


270,057

 



 

Condensed Consolidated Statement of Changes in Equity

For the six months ended 30 June 2018

 

 








 Reserve







 








  for shares







 


Called-up




    Capital


held in the


Currency






share


Share


redemption


employee


translation


Retained


Total


capital


premium


reserve


benefit trust


reserve


earnings


equity


£'000


£'000


£'000


£'000


£'000


£'000


£'000















Balance at 1 January 2017

3,259


90,458


932


(72,941)


32,746


192,107


246,561

Currency translation differences

-


-


-


-


(1,935)


-


(1,935)

Net expense recognised directly in equity

-


-


-


-


(1,935)


-


(1,935)

Profit on hedging instruments

-


-


-


-


-


706


706

Profit for the six months ended 30 June 2017

-


-


-


-


-


40,912


40,912

Total comprehensive (loss)/income for the period

-


-


-


-


(1,935)


41,618


39,683

Exercise of share plans

17


1,596


-


-


-


4,049


5,662

Reserve transfer when shares held in the employee benefit trust vest

-


-


-


7,161


-


(7,161)


-

Credit in respect of share schemes

-


-


-


-


-


4,019


4,019

Debit in respect of tax on share schemes

-


-


-


-


-


(337)


(337)

Dividends

-


-


-


-


-


(25,860)


(25,860)


17


1,596


-


7,161


-


(25,290)


(16,516)





























Balance at 30 June 2017

3,276


92,054


932


(65,780)


30,811


208,435


269,728















Currency translation differences

-


-


-


-


(953)


-


(953)

Net expense recognised directly in equity

-


-


-


-


(953)


-


(953)

Profit on hedging instruments

-


-


-


-


-


634


634

Profit for the six months ended 31 December 2017

-


-


-


-


-


42,168


42,168

Total comprehensive (loss)/income for the period

-


-


-


-


(953)


42,802


41,849

Exercise of share plans

(8)


623


-


-


-


6,409


7,024

Reserve transfer when shares held in the employee benefit trust vest

-


-


-


6,849


-


(6,849)


-

Credit in respect of share schemes

-


-


-


-


-


2,790


2,790

Credit in respect of tax on share schemes

-


-


-


-


-


1,057


1,057

Dividends

-


-


-


-


-


(52,391)


(52,391)


(8)


623


-


6,849


-


(48,984)


(41,520)















Balance at 31 December 2017 and 1 January 2018

3,268


92,677


932


(58,931)


29,858


202,253


270,057

Currency translation differences

-


-


-


-


(525)


-


(525)

Net expense recognised directly in equity

-


-


-


-


(525)


-


(525)

Loss on hedging instruments

-


-


-


-


-


(612)


(612)

Profit for the six months ended 30 June 2018

-


-


-


-


-


49,412


49,412

Total comprehensive (loss)/income for the period

-


-


-


-


(525)


48,800


48,275

Purchase of shares held in employee benefit trust

-


-


-


(9,898)


-


-


(9,898)

Exercise of share plans

11


3,999


-


-


-


15,116


19,126

Reserve transfer when shares held in the employee benefit trust vest

-


-


-


15,402


-


(15,402)


-

Credit in respect of share schemes

-


-


-


-


-


3,684


3,684

Credit in respect of tax on share schemes

-


-


-


-


-


552


552

Dividends

-


-


-


-


-


(27,433)


(27,433)


11


3,999


-


5,504


-


(23,483)


(13,969)















Balance at 30 June 2018

3,279


96,676


932


(53,427)


29,333


227,570


304,363



 

Condensed Consolidated Statement of Cash Flows

For the six months ended 30 June 2018

 




30 June


30 June


31 December




2018


2017


2017




Unaudited


Unaudited


Audited


Note


£'000


£'000


£'000

















Cash generated from operations

12


40,490


52,495


124,464

Income tax paid



(19,747)


(24,628)


(38,154)

Net cash from operating activities



20,743


27,867


86,310









Cash flows from investing activities








Purchases of property, plant and equipment



(6,841)


(4,863)


(13,415)

Purchases of intangible assets



(4,022)


(4,387)


(7,508)

Proceeds from the sale of property, plant and equipment, and computer software



83


630


4,688

Interest received



182


148


229

Net cash used in investing activities



(10,598)


(8,472)


(16,006)









Cash flows from financing activities








Dividends paid



(27,433)


(25,860)


(78,251)

Interest paid



(174)


(1,579)


(1,845)

Issue of own shares for the exercise of options



19,126


5,662


12,686

Purchase of shares into the employee benefit trust



(9,898)


-


-

Net cash used in financing activities



(18,379)


(21,777)










Net (decrease)/increase in cash and cash equivalents



(8,234)


(2,382)


2,894

Cash and cash equivalents at the beginning of the period



95,605


92,796


92,796

Exchange loss on cash and cash equivalents



(323)


(1,468)


(85)

Cash and cash equivalents at the end of the period

13


87,048


88,946


 



 

Notes to the condensed set of interim results

For the six months ended 30 June 2018

 

 

1.         General information

 

The information for the year ended 31 December 2017 does not constitute statutory accounts as defined in section 435 of the Companies Act 2006. A copy of the statutory accounts for that year has been delivered to the Registrar of Companies. The auditors reported on those accounts: their report was unqualified, did not draw attention to any matters by way of emphasis and did not contain a statement under section 498(2) or (3) of the Companies Act 2006.

 

 

2.         Accounting policies

 

Basis of preparation

The unaudited interim condensed consolidated financial statements for the six months ended 30 June 2018 have been prepared in accordance with IAS 34 'Interim financial reporting' and with the Disclosure Guidance and Transparency Rules of the Financial Conduct Authority.

 

The unaudited interim condensed consolidated financial statements do not constitute the Group's statutory financial statements. The Group's most recent statutory financial statements, which comprise the annual report and audited financial statements for the year ended 31 December 2017, were approved by the directors on 6 March 2018. The interim condensed consolidated financial statements should be read in conjunction with the Annual Report and Accounts for the year ended 31 December 2017, which have been prepared in accordance with International Financial Reporting Standards ('IFRSs') as adopted by the European Union.

 

During the period the Group adopted "IFRS 15 - Revenue from Contracts with Customers" and "IFRS 9 - Financial Instruments" for the first time. No adjustment was required for either standard on first time adoption. All other accounting policies adopted in the preparation of the interim condensed consolidated financial statements are consistent with those followed in the preparation of the Group's annual consolidated financial statements for the year ended 31 December 2017.

 

Going concern

The Group's business activities, together with the factors likely to affect its future development, performance and position are set out in the interim management report. The interim management report also includes a summary of the Group's financial position, its cash flows and its borrowing facilities.

 

The directors believe the Group is well placed to manage its business risks successfully. The Group's forecasts and projections, taking account of reasonably possible changes in trading performance, show that the Group should be able to operate within the level of its current committed facilities.

 

After making enquiries, the directors have a reasonable expectation that the Company and the Group have adequate resources to continue in operational existence for the foreseeable future, a period of not less than 12 months from the date of this report. Accordingly, they continue to adopt the going concern basis in preparing the half-yearly financial report.

 

New accounting standards, interpretations and amendments adopted by the Group

During 2017, the Group concluded its detailed assessment of "IFRS 15 - Revenue from Contracts with Customers". As a result of this assessment, no adjustment is required. A fully retrospective method has been adopted for transparency and comparison purposes.

 

The Directors have also concluded that no adjustment is required in respect of "IFRS 9 - Financial Instruments".

 

We are continuing with our review and implementation of the new Accounting Standard, "IFRS 16 - Leases". A further update will be provided in this year's Annual Report and Accounts.

 

The Group has not early adopted any standard, interpretation or amendment that has been issued but is not yet effective.

 



 

3.         Segment reporting

 

All revenues disclosed are derived from external customers.

 

The accounting policies of the reportable segments are the same as the Group's accounting policies. Segment operating profit represents the profit earned by each segment including allocation of central administration costs. This is the measure reported to the Group's Board, the chief operating decision maker, for the purpose of resource allocation and assessment of segment performance.

 

(a)        Revenue, gross profit and operating profit by reportable segment

 



Revenue


Gross Profit



Six months ended


Year ended


Six months ended

Year ended



30 June


30 June


31 December


30 June


30 June


31 December



2018


2017


2017


2018


2017


2017



£'000


£'000


£'000


£'000


£'000


£'000














EMEA


389,685


323,092


675,983


194,976


162,117


332,288














United Kingdom


155,027


160,675


312,915


69,657


73,020


140,768














Asia Pacific

Australia and New Zealand


55,273


56,256


110,602


19,407


19,010


37,703


Asia


70,336


60,616


125,688


54,676


47,644


99,469


Total


125,609


116,872


236,290


74,083


66,654


137,172














Americas



81,259


72,507


146,346


57,303


50,196


101,340
















751,580


673,146


1,371,534


396,019


351,987


711,568
















































Operating Profit































Six months ended

Year ended









30 June


30 June


31 December









2018


2017


2017









£'000


£'000


£'000














EMEA








40,945


31,397


69,674














United Kingdom








10,453


8,706


15,978














Asia Pacific

Australia and New Zealand








1,467


2,557


5,480


Asia








7,515


8,741


18,039


Total








8,982


11,298


23,519














Americas









6,844


5,519


9,151














Operating profit








67,224


56,920


118,322

Financial income/(expense)








6


28


(160)

Profit before tax








67,230


56,948


118,162

 

The above analysis by destination is not materially different to analysis by origin.

 

The analysis below is of the carrying amount of reportable segment assets, liabilities and non-current assets. Segment assets and liabilities include items directly attributable to a segment as well as those that can be allocated on a reasonable basis. The individual reportable segments exclude current income tax assets and liabilities. Non-current assets include property, plant and equipment, computer software, goodwill and other intangible.

 



 

(b)        Segment assets, liabilities and non current assets by reportable segment

 



Total Assets


Total Liabilities



Six months ended


Year ended


Six months ended

Year ended



30 June


30 June


31 December


30 June


30 June


31 December



2018


2017


2017


2018


2017


2017



£'000


£'000


£'000


£'000


£'000


£'000














EMEA


244,044


200,716


219,024


124,352


97,687


109,100














United Kingdom


112,813


109,452


123,423


35,335


43,680


51,193














Asia Pacific

Australia and New Zealand


24,646


26,528


24,639


10,432


12,141


10,349


Asia


72,152


61,587


61,176


14,072


14,708


18,132


Total


96,798


88,115


85,815


24,504


26,849


28,481














Americas


62,452


59,221


55,898


21,475


18,723


18,815

Segment assets/liabilities


516,107


457,504


484,160


205,666


186,939


207,589














Income tax


15,617


16,488


15,652


21,695


17,325


22,166
















531,724


473,992


499,812


227,361


204,264


229,755










































Property, Plant & Equipment


Intangible Assets



Six months ended


Year ended


Six months ended

Year ended



30 June


30 June


31 December


30 June


30 June


31 December



2018


2017


2017


2018


2017


2017



£'000


£'000


£'000


£'000


£'000


£'000














EMEA


12,489


11,342


12,218


3,316


3,892


3,668














United Kingdom


6,466


6,989


6,894


29,786


32,664


30,116














Asia Pacific

Australia and New Zealand


1,323


1,133


1,174


1


11


2


Asia


5,250


3,136


3,397


26


40


31


Total


6,573


4,269


4,571


27


51


33














Americas


6,340


6,941


6,475


249


445


341



31,868


29,541


30,158


33,378


37,052


34,158

 

The below analyses in notes (c) revenue and gross profit by discipline (being the professions of candidates placed) and (d) revenue and gross profit generated from permanent and temporary placements have been included as additional disclosure over and above the requirements of IFRS 8 "Operating Segments".

 

(c)        Revenue and gross profit by discipline

 


Revenue


Gross Profit


Six months ended


Year ended


Six months ended

Year ended


30 June


30 June


31 December


30 June


30 June


31 December


2018


2017


2017


2018


2017


2017


£'000


£'000


£'000


£'000


£'000


£'000













Accounting and Financial Services

294,427


278,831


559,480


136,456


129,975


261,062













Legal, Technology, HR, Secretarial and Other

193,546


163,819


337,857


94,390


79,299


161,424













Engineering, Property & Construction, Procurement & Supply Chain

166,932


138,442


290,830


94,746


76,358


158,714













Marketing, Sales and Retail

96,675


92,054


183,367


70,427


66,355


130,368














751,580


673,146


1,371,534


396,019


351,987


711,568

 



 

(d)          Revenue and gross profit generated from permanent and temporary placements

 


Revenue


Gross Profit


Six months ended


Year ended


Six months ended

Year ended


30 June


30 June


31 December


30 June


30 June


31 December


2018


2017


2017


2018


2017


2017


£'000


£'000


£'000


£'000


£'000


£'000













Permanent

308,948


270,852


543,262


304,202


267,287


536,010













Temporary

442,632


402,294


828,272


91,817


84,700


175,558














751,580


673,146


1,371,534


396,019


351,987


711,568

 

 

4.         Financial income / (expenses)

 


Six months ended

Year ended


30 June


30 June


31 December


2018


2017


2017


£'000


£'000


£'000

Financial income






Bank interest receivable

182


148


229







Financial expenses






Bank interest payable

(176)


(120)


(241)

Interest on discounting of French construction participation tax

-


-


(148)


(176)


(120)


(389)

 

 

5.         Taxation

 

Taxation for the six month period is charged at 26.5% (six months ended 30 June 2017: 28.2%; year ended 31 December 2017: 29.7%), representing the best estimate of the average annual effective tax rate expected for the full year together with known prior year adjustments applied to the pre-tax income for the six month period.

 

 

6.         Dividends

 


Six months ended

Year ended


30 June


30 June


31 December


2018


2017


2017


£'000


£'000


£'000

Amounts recognised as distributions to equity holders in the year:






Final dividend for the year ended 31 December 2017 of 8.60p per ordinary share (2016: 8.23p)

27,433


25,860


25,857

Interim dividend for the period ended 30 June 2017 of 3.90p per ordinary share (2016: 3.75p)

-


-


12,287

Special dividend for the year ended 31 December 2017 of 12.73p per ordinary share (2016: 6.46p)

-


-


40,107


27,433


25,860


78,251







Amounts proposed as distributions to equity holders in the year:












Proposed interim dividend for the period ended 30 June 2018 of 4.10p per ordinary share (2017: 3.90p)

13,078


12,253


-







Proposed special dividend for the year ended 31 December 2018 of 12.73p per ordinary share (2017: 12.73p)

40,606


40,000


-







Proposed final dividend for the year ended 31 December 2017 of 8.60p per ordinary share



-


27,144

 

The proposed interim and special dividends have not been approved by the Board at 30 June 2018 and therefore have not been included as a liability. The comparative dividends at 30 June 2017 were also not recognised as a liability in the prior period.

 

The proposed interim dividend of 4.10p (2017: 3.90p) per ordinary share and special dividend of 12.73p (2017: 12.73p) per ordinary share will be paid on 10 October 2018 to shareholders on the register at the close of business on 7 September 2018.

 

7.         Share-based payments

 

In accordance with IFRS 2 "Share-based Payment", a charge of £4.8m has been recognised for share options and other share-based payment arrangements (including social charges) (30 June 2017: £4.3m, 31 December 2017: £7.7m).

 

 

8.         Earnings per ordinary share

 

The calculation of the basic and diluted earnings per share is based on the following data:

 


Six months ended

Year ended


30 June


30 June


31 December

Earnings

2018


2017


2017







Earnings for basic and diluted earnings per share (£'000)

49,412


40,912


83,080







Number of shares






Weighted average number of shares used for basic earnings per share ('000)

317,795


312,072


313,491

Dilution effect of share plans ('000)

2,227


1,222


1,287

Diluted weighted average number of shares used for diluted earnings per share ('000)

320,022


313,294


314,778







Basic earnings per share (pence)

15.5


13.1


26.5

Diluted earnings per share (pence)

15.4


13.1


26.4

 

The above results all relate to continuing operations.

 

 

9.         Property, plant and equipment

 

Acquisitions and Disposals

During the period ended 30 June 2018 the Group acquired property, plant and equipment with a cost of £6.8m (30 June 2017: £4.9m, 31 December 2017: £13.4m).

 

 

10.        Trade and other receivables

 


Six months ended

Year ended


30 June


30 June


31 December


2018


2017


2017


£'000


£'000


£'000

Current






Trade receivables

277,016


225,853


253,555

Less provision for impairment of receivables

(7,923)


(6,497)


(8,161)

Net trade receivables

269,093


219,356


245,394

Other receivables

8,579


5,235


9,839

Accrued income

40,612


42,861


31,938

Prepayments

16,749


10,787


11,918


335,033


278,239


299,089

Non-current






Other Receivables

11,680


9,110


10,513

 

 



 

11.        Trade and other payables

 


Six months ended

Year ended


30 June


30 June


31 December


2018


2017


2017


£'000


£'000


£'000

Current






Trade payables

2,571


1,331


6,240

Other tax and social security

50,142


52,416


54,615

Other payables

28,125


21,113


28,312

Accruals

104,966


97,374


97,467

Deferred income

1,821


1,290


1,096


187,625


173,524


187,730

Non-current






Deferred income

15,173


11,943


18,628

Other tax and social security

1,529


391


861


16,702


12,334


19,489

 

 

12.        Cash flows from operating activities

 


Six months ended


Year ended


June


30 June


31 December


2018


2017


2017


£'000


£'000


£'000







Profit before tax

67,230


56,948


118,162

Depreciation and amortisation charges

9,486


9,083


19,094

Loss/(Income) on sale of property, plant and equipment, and computer software

39


(34)


(159)

Share scheme charges

3,684


4,019


6,796

Net finance costs

(6)


(28)


160

Operating cash flow before changes in working capital

80,433


69,988


144,053

(Increase) in receivables

(38,688)


(18,660)


(42,629)

(Decrease)/increase in payables

(1,255)


1,167


23,040

Cash generated from operations

40,490


52,495


124,464

 

 

13.        Cash and cash equivalents

 


Six months ended


Year ended


30 June


30 June


31 December


2018


2017


2017


£'000


£'000


£'000







Cash at bank and in hand

86,543


83,316


95,327

Short-term deposits

505


5,630


278

Cash and cash equivalents

87,048


88,946


95,605

Cash and cash equivalents in the statement of cash flows

87,048


88,946


95,605

 

The Group operated a multi-currency notional cash pool. The main Eurozone subsidiaries and the UK-based Group Treasury subsidiary participated in this cash pool.  It is the Group's intention to extend the scope of the participation to other Group companies going forward. The structure facilitates interest and balance compensation of cash and bank overdrafts.

 

PageGroup maintains a Confidential Invoice Facility with HSBC whereby the Group has the option to discount facilities in order to advance cash on its receivables. The facility is used only ad hoc in case the Group needs to fund any major GBP cash outflow.

 



 

RESPONSIBILITY STATEMENT

 

 

The Directors confirm that to the best of their knowledge:-

 

a) the condensed set of interim financial statements has been prepared in accordance with IAS 34 "Interim Financial Reporting";

 

b) the interim management report includes a fair review of the information required by DTR 4.2.7R (indication of important events during the first six months and description of principal risks and uncertainties for the remaining six months of the year); and

 

c)  the interim management report includes a fair review of the information required by DTR 4.2.8R (disclosure of related parties' transactions and changes therein).

 

 

 

On behalf of the Board

 

 

 

 

 

 

S Ingham

K Stagg

Chief Executive Officer

Chief Financial Officer

 

7 August 2018

 

Copies of the condensed interim financial statements are now available and can be downloaded from the Company's website http://www.page.com/investors/investor-library/2018.aspx

 

 


This information is provided by RNS, the news service of the London Stock Exchange. RNS is approved by the Financial Conduct Authority to act as a Primary Information Provider in the United Kingdom. Terms and conditions relating to the use and distribution of this information may apply. For further information, please contact rns@lseg.com or visit www.rns.com.
 
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Half-year Report - RNS