Hays propose a 4% increase to 3.97p per share and a special dividend of 5.43p per share

DividendMax Ltd.

Hays propose a 4% increase to 3.97p per share and a special dividend of 5.43p per share

Hays have proposed an increase in full-year core dividend of 4%, in line with earnings, to 3.97p per share and special dividend of £79.7m, up 9% to 5.43p per share. Total full-year dividends of £137.9m (2018: £128.3m)

Other financial highlights include:

·      Good 6% fee growth, with operating profit up 4% to £248.8m, 80% of which was generated in International markets. Group Conversion Rate(4) down 70bps to 22.0% as fee growth slowed across the year  

·      Australia & New Zealand (ANZ): 4% net fee growth, with flat operating profit as market conditions slowed in the second half. Record 22,000 Temp and Contracting workers in June 2019  

·      Germany: Record net fees, up 9% despite weakening market conditions. Operating profit up 7% (c.6% adjusted for working days). Fees in Temp & Contracting up 8%, Perm up 16% 

·      UK & Ireland (UK&I): 2% net fee growth, with operating profit up 4% on strong cost control. Signs of reduced business confidence in Q4 

·      Rest of World (RoW): Good net fee growth of 8%, with operating profit up 2% impacted by weaker market conditions in EMEA ex-Germany. Record net fees in 18 countries, including strong growth in Asia and the Americas 

·      Strategic developments: Further investment in consultant productivity tools and back office scalability. We restructured several country operations, mainly in Europe, incurring an exceptional £6.8 million charge, which is expected to deliver c.£5 million of annualised pro-rata cost savings. We opened eight new offices globally, and made further significant office expansions in Asia, Europe and the Americas. Year-end Group consultant headcount up 4%, although decreased by 2% since 31 December 2018

·      Record closing net cash of £129.7m, with strong 106% conversion of operating profit into operating cash flow

Companies mentioned