Trading update for the fourth quarter ended 31 December 2011
FINANCIAL AND OPERATIONAL HIGHLIGHTS
Gross Profit (Net Fee Income)
% change (constant currency*)
The Americas and South Africa
· 74% of Group's net fee income generated from international business.
· Strong growth in France and Germany against a backdrop of economic uncertainty across Europe.
· Further expansion in Asia with the opening of the Group's first Taiwan office in Taipei.
· Market conditions in the UK remain difficult.
· Group headcount increased to 2,042 (30 September 2011: 2,001) as a result of a major Resource Solutions client win.
· Balance sheet remains strong, with net cash in excess of £17m as at 31 December 2011 (£24.9m as at 31 December 2010).
Robert Walters, Chief Executive, commented:
"Group net fee income for the year ended 31 December 2011 was up 18% (15%*) to £183.6m (2010: £155.4m) and we expect a satisfactory outcome for 2011 as a whole.
"We are very mindful of current market conditions and weaker client and candidate confidence and therefore enter 2012 with caution. We will run the business as we have in previous times of economic uncertainty, through sensible cost management and long term investment in those markets offering strong growth opportunities. The Group remains well positioned to meet the challenges ahead as a result of our strategy of geographic expansion and diversification."
The Group will publish its final results for the year ended 31 December 2011 on 1 March 2012.
* Constant currency is calculated by applying prior year exchange rates to local currency results for the current and prior years.
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