Experian (200)Experian reported first half of 2014 total revenue of US$2.4bn (2013: US$2.3bn).  Growth from continuing activities was 4%. There was no change in organic revenue.  Total revenue from continuing activities up 5% at actual exchange rates.

Total EBIT from continuing activities of US$627m, up 3% at constant exchange rates. Total EBIT from continuing operations was also US$627m up 3% at actual exchange rates.  EBIT margin from continuing activities of 26.2%, up 60 basis points before the impact of foreign exchange movements and acquisition investment, down 40 basis points year-on-year.

Benchmark profit before tax of US$590m, up 3% at actual rates. Profit before tax of US$534m (2013: US$480m).   Benchmark EPS of 45.1 US cents, up 6% at actual rates. Basic EPS of 41.8 US cents (2013: 34.2 US cents).

Strong cash flow with 95% conversion of EBIT into operating cash flow (2013: 84%), and growth in operating cash flow of 17%.  First interim dividend of 12.25 US cents per ordinary share, up 7%.

Brian Cassin, Chief Executive Officer, commented:  “We have delivered a good earnings result for the first half, driven by strength in North America Credit Services, a return to growth in Brazil and a good all-round performance in the UK. Our cash performance was particularly strong which has allowed us to reduce debt ahead of schedule and we are pleased to announce an increase in our first interim dividend of 7%.  “For the second half, we see near term organic revenue growth as subdued, improving as we exit the year. For the year, we expect to maintain margins (at constant currency), to deliver further good progress in Benchmark earnings (at constant currency) and we now expect to exceed 95% cash flow conversion.  “We have shared our five key strategic priorities today for sustaining attractive rates of earnings growth and superior returns. Taken together, we believe that these actions will allow us to build an even more successful business in the years to come and to deliver significant value to our shareholders.”

General highlights:  Good progress in the first half with total revenue growth from continuing activities of 5%,   Benchmark EPS growth of 6%, operating cash flow growth of 17% and first interim dividend up 7%.

New agreement with FICO, the score most recognised by consumers in the US, to create highly compelling offers under the Experian.com brand – an important step in our strategy to position Experian.com as the flagship brand for US consumers.

Encouraging performances in parts of the portfolio. Good growth in North America Credit Services. Sequential improvement in Brazil, returning to growth in Q2 after World Cup.  Passport and 41st Parameter acquisitions growing strongly.

Deleveraging faster than anticipated given strong operating cash flow performance.

Source:  Experian Earnings Report