TheEssentra Board of Directors recommends a final dividend of 14.4 pence per 25 pence ordinary share (2018: 14.4 pence). The final dividend will be paid on 1 June 2020 to equity holders on the share register on 24 April 2020: the ex-dividend date will be 23 April 2020. Essentra operates a Dividend Re-Investment Programme ("DRIP"), details of which are available from the Company's Registrars, Computershare Investor Services PLC: the final date for DRIP elections will be 7 May 2020. The Board recognises that free cash flow generated by the continuing operation in 2019 (following the successful divestments), was short of the dividend payment amount. However, the Company will aim to rebuild dividend cover as it continues to make strategic, financial and operational progress.
Other financial highlights include:
FY 2019 results build on positive underlying momentum seen since inflection point of H2 2018
Ø Like-for-like revenue decline of 0.7%
+1.5%, on an underlying basis
Ø Adjusted operating profit down 5.4% (at constant FX) to £87.5m notwithstanding portfolio simplification successfully completed during the year; adjusted operating margin +10bps to 9.0% (at constant FX)
Adjusted operating profit +2.0%, on an underlying basis
Ø Reported operating profit of £80.0m versus £47.2m in 2018
Ø Adjusted basic EPS lower by 9.7% (at constant FX) at 21.3p (2018: 23.5p)
Ø Reported basic EPS of 14.7p compares to 9.3p in 2018
Net debt of £284.4m, with net debt / EBITDA to 2.0x (after applying IFRS 16)
Ø Net debt of £233.7m and net debt / EBITDA of 1.9x before applying IFRS 16
Further good progress on all key metrics of the stability programme.
Simplification of the portfolio, allowing the Specialist Components division to be dissolved at the end of Q3 2019.
− Funds used in part for two value-creating acquisitions, plus JV partner buy out in Filters Dubai