International business experiences ‘tightening of activity’ for Prime People
The Board of Prime People plc has provided an update on the Company's trading performance for the first half of its financial year and confirms that it intends to announce the interim results for the six months ended 30th September 2017 on 9th November 2017.
Group net fee income is broadly in line with the same period in the prior year. Prime People’s UK business has performed in line with its expectations during the first half with a modest increase in net fee income over the comparable period last year. Whilst continuing to contribute to profit, its international business experienced a tightening of activity in the first half compared with the same period in the prior year. Before taking account of exceptional acquisition costs relating to the acquisition of the majority interest in Command Recruitment Group (HK) limited ("CMD"), the company expects profit before tax for the first half on a like for like basis to be approximately 10% lower than for the same period in the prior year.
With the acquisition of the majority interest in CMD, Prime People has continued to advance its international strategy by extending its reach and capability both in Asia and the Middle East. Its existing international business will benefit from increased dominance in built environment recruitment in the Asia region. October trading in the region is in line with expectations and its international businesses are expected to contribute positively to the full year outcome.
The business continues to be cash generative. Net cash at the date of this statement is £2.10m (after £1.00m consideration paid for the Command purchase). The March 2017 year-end position was £2.40m.
Prime People says it is committed to paying dividends and creating and returning value to our shareholders. The Company intends to declare an interim dividend of 1.75p (2016: 1.75p) per share after publication of its interim results.
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