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Matchtech Group plc Half year financial report

Matchtech Group plc Half year financial report for the six months ended 31 January 2011

NFI INCREASING, INVESTMENT MADE IN GROWTH INITIATIVES, INTERIM DIVIDEND MAINTAINED

Matchtech Group plc ("Matchtech" or the "Group"), one of the UK's leading recruitment solutions specialists, today announces its unaudited results for the six months ended 31 January 2011.

Financial Highlights
Revenue up 13% to 141.1m (2010: 125.4m)
Total Net Fee Income (NFI) up 9% to 13.6m (2010: 12.5m)
Profit before tax of 2.3m (2010: 4.4m), reflecting accelerated headcount investment
Number of contractors on placement up 9% to 5,200 (2010: 4,750)
Interim dividend maintained at 5.0p (2010: 5.0p), reflecting resilience of core business and Board's confidence in the future

Operational Highlights
Solid performance from Matchtech UK, including Framework Agreement wins with new clients
o Engineering sector performed solidly
o Built Environment performed resiliently in challenging market
o Information Systems & Technology delivered a strong performance
o Continued investment in Science & Medical
German operation making progress, winning Preferred Supplier Agreements within the Aerospace industry
elemense continues to expand its Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO) services, winning new clients and extending existing contracts
Newly launched Professional Services brands, Barclay Meade and Alderwood Education, beginning to gain traction

Commenting on the results, George Materna, Chairman of the Group said:

"We have continued to invest in our core Technical business and growth in certain sectors is strong, especially Information Systems & Technology.

As we reported in February 2011, the recruitment phase and the establishment of the new staff within the Professional Services market place took longer than expected. Whilst the momentum in these businesses has been slower than anticipated in converting to results, the pipeline of new business is increasing as the brands become more established and we have seen growth in both the new Professional Services brands and in our new German operation.

We are pleased with the quality of the people recruited and the Board is confident that the strategy of diversification is the right one, notwithstanding the negative impact on operating profit results in the short term.

Although, in general, the economic climate remains subdued, we are seeing improvement in some areas in which Matchtech is a market leader. Reflecting trends within the Group, the most recent KPMG/REC UK Labour Market Report on Jobs highlighted IT, Engineering and Professional Services as the top three sectors for improved levels of demand for permanent staff and Engineering, Blue Collar and IT as the top three sectors currently in demand for temporary and contract staff.

Our balanced Contract and Permanent mix and niche specialisation in these sectors along with the continued efforts of our staff in maintaining and developing our business all give the Board confidence in its outlook for the Group's prospects over the medium term.

Trading has continued to progress steadily since our last update on 1 February 2011 and the Board currently anticipates that the results for the year to 31 July 2011 will be in line with market expectations."

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