Information and events group,
At the research and data division, last year’s acquisition of Ned Davis Research helped boost revenues 25 per cent to £130m. The conference and seminars side, meanwhile, increased adjusted operating profit by 9 per cent to £29m, and profits at business publishing rose 5 per cent to 24.5m. Training and financial publishing, meanwhile - which are more reliant on the financial services sector - both reported falls in profit and revenues. But the group continues to invest in its online side - £10m was spent here during the year, matching last year’s sum.
Immediate prospects, however, aren't so attractive with market conditions having become much tougher since June, particularly in Europe. So, while underlying revenues grew 6 per cent in the first half, that growth slowed to 1 per cent in the second half. Although management believes the outlook for its emerging markets, which generates about a third of group revenue, will be brighter than in its developed markets during the next six months.
Broker Investec Securities expects full-year adjusted pre-tax profit of £118m, giving EPS of 71.9p (2012: £105.2m/64.3p).
|EUROMONEY INSTITUTIONAL INVESTOR (ERM)|
|ORD PRICE:||789p||MARKET VALUE:||£981m|
|TOUCH:||789-795p||12-MONTH HIGH:||828p||LOW: 610p|
|DIVIDEND YIELD:||2.8%||PE RATIO:||14|
|NET ASSET VALUE:||226p*||NET DEBT:||11%|
|Year to 30 Sep||Turnover (£m)||Pre-tax profit (£m)||Earnings per share (p)||Dividend per share (p)|
Ex-div: 21 Nov
Payment: 14 Feb
Includes intangible assets of £469m, or 378p per share
Despite a decent enough performance, future prospects don't look so good. That leaves the shares - which have risen over 10 per cent since late July and are now rated on a not so cheap 11 times expected earnings - trading up with events. Hold.