7 July 2016

Half-yearly financial results for the six months ended 30 June 2016

Net fee income up 9%


Robert Walters plc (LSE: RWA), the leading international recruitment consultancy, today announces its half-yearly financial results for the six months ended 30 June 2016.

"The Group achieved a 9% increase in net fee income in constant currency, with growth rates strongest in our Asia Pacific and Continental European regions. Profits in the first half were impacted by weakness in the UK due to uncertainty surrounding the EU referendum and significant investment in Resource Solutions to support two new and large scale client wins. Both engagements will be profitable in the second half.

"The results highlight the strength of our global, diversified business with our blend of revenue streams covering permanent, contract, interim and recruitment process outsourcing and a geographic footprint spanning 25 countries including many of the world's fastest growing and emerging recruitment markets. Current trading is in line with market expectations for the full year."

Robert Walters, Chief Executive

Financial and operational highlights

  H1 2016 H2 2015  % change  % change (constant currency*)
Revenue £451.4m £377.6m 20% 17%
Gross profit (net fee income) £128.1m £113.9m 12% 9%
Operating profit £10.1m £9.0m  12% (2%)
Profit before taxation £11.2m £8.7m 29% 15%
Basic earnings per share 10.6p 8.0p 33% n/a

* Constant currency is calculated by applying prior period average exchange rates to local currency results for the current and prior years

  • Growth strongest in our Asia Pacific and Continental European regions which together now account for 64% of the Group's net fee income.
  • Asia Pacific net fee income up 15% (10%*) to £54.0m (£51.5m*) (2015: £47.0m) and operating profit up 35% (16%*) to £6.4m (£5.5m*) (2015: £4.7m).
    • Japan, our largest business in the region, Taiwan, Indonesia and Thailand all delivered record performances.
    • Australia produced the strongest growth rates we have seen for four years.
    • Solid performances from businesses in Hong Kong, mainland China and Singapore.
    • First office opened in the Philippines.
  • UK net fee income up 4% to £40.2m (2015: £38.7m) producing an operating profit of £1.8m (2015: £2.8m).
    • Weaker performance against an uncertain political and economic backdrop.
    • Significant investment in Resource Solutions to implement two major client wins.
  • Europe net fee income up 27% (19%*) to £28.2m (£26.5m*) (2015: £22.3m) and operating profit more than doubled to £2.1m (£1.8m*) (2015: £1.0m).
    • Excellent performance in France and Benelux across both permanent and contract recruitment.
    • Spain and Switzerland continue to go from strength to strength.
  • Group headcount of 2,902 (30 June 2015: 2,728).
  • Interim dividend increased by 18% to 2.30p per share (30 June 2015: 1.95p).
  • Group funded the purchase of 4.2m shares by the Employee Benefit Trust for £13.5m at an average price of £3.17 during the period. A further 1.9m shares have been purchased for £5.3m at an average price of £2.75 since the period end.
  • Strong balance sheet with net cash of £10.2m as at 30 June 2016 (30 June 2015: £14.6m).

The Company will be holding a presentation for analysts at 10.30am today at Newgate Communications, Sky Light City Tower, 50 Basinghall Street, London EC2V 5DE.

The Company will publish an interim management statement for the third quarter ending 30 September 2016 on 17 October 2016.

For investor information visit our websitehttp://investors.robertwalters.com/

Further information

Robert Walters plc                         +44 20 7379 3333

Robert Walters, Chief Executive
Alan Bannatyne, Chief Financial Officer

Newgate Communications             +44 20 7680 6550

Steffan Williams
Charlotte Coulson
Madeleine Palmstierna

About Robert Walters

Robert Walters is a market-leading international specialist professional recruitment group with over 2,900 staff spanning 25 countries. We specialise in the placement of the highest calibre professionals across the disciplines of accountancy and finance, banking, engineering, HR, IT, legal, sales, marketing, secretarial and support and supply chain and procurement. Our client base ranges from the world's leading blue-chip corporates and financial services organisations through to SMEs and start-ups. The Group's outsourcing division, Resource Solutions is a market leader in recruitment process outsourcing and managed services.


Forward looking statements

This announcement contains certain forward-looking statements.  These statements are made by the directors in good faith based on the information available to them at the time of their approval of this announcement and such statements should be treated with caution due to the inherent uncertainties, including both economic and business risk factors, underlying any such forward-looking information.