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Robert Walters plc Results Reflect A Year In Transition

Robert Walters plc Results Reflect A Year In Transition

FINANCIAL HIGHLIGHTS

• Revenue of &pound567.8m (2011: &pound528.1m).

• Gross profit (net fee income) of &pound188.4m (2011: &pound183.4m).

• Operating profit of &pound8.5m (2011: &pound15.6m).

• Profit before taxation of &pound7.7m (2011: &pound15.1m).

• Basic earnings per share of 6.8p (2011: 14.1p).

• Final dividend maintained at 3.68p per share (2011: 3.68p) giving a total dividend for the year of 5.15p (2011: 5.15p).

• Balance sheet remains strong with net cash of &pound11.5m as at 31 December 2012 (31 December 2011: &pound17.1m).

OPERATIONAL HIGHLIGHTS

• Profitability was impacted by a decline in permanent global financial services recruitment.

o Decisive action has been taken reducing headcount across this sector by 18%.

• Successfully grew net fee income by diversifying into new disciplines and territories providing a platform for profitable growth, with headcount increases of:

o Sales and marketing: 29%.

o Engineering and oil and gas: 31%.

o HR and supply chain and procurement: 23%.

• New offices opened in San Francisco, Rio de Janeiro, Milton Keynes and Parramatta. Two new offices opened early 2013 - Ghent and Dubai. The Group now has 53 offices in 24 countries.

• Good balance of permanent (69%) and contract (31%) recruitment net fee income (2011: 69%:31%).

• Group headcount increased to 2,233 as at 31 December 2012 (31 December 2011: 2,047) largely due to Resource Solutions, our recruitment outsourcing business, winning several new contracts during the year and expanding into Asia.

Robert Walters, Chief Executive, commented:

"2012 has been a year of transition. We successfully increased our net fee income across all regions and delivered results in line with expectations whilsttaking considerable strides to diversify away from financial services. This is evident by the fact that 85% of the Group's recruitment net fee income is now generated outside of this sector (2011: 78%). The Group has successfully responded to market conditions, supported by strong management, a healthy balance sheet and a well regarded international brand.

"We are confident that the significant changes we have made to the structure of our business will deliver a platform for enhanced future profitability. In addition, whilst some geographic areas continue to face economic uncertainty we believe it is important to maintain our presence across our markets in order to benefit from operational gearing when confidence returns."

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