28 June 2019
('Wilmington', 'the Group' or 'the Company')
Pre-close Trading Update
Wilmington plc, the provider of information, education and networking services in Risk & Compliance, Healthcare and Professional knowledge areas, today announces a pre-close trading update for the year to 30 June 2019.
The Board is pleased to announce that underlying trading is broadly in line with the full year expectations set out at the start of the financial year. After a strong Q3, with organic revenue growth levels that were in excess of those expected, Q4 is likely to be approximately flat year on year, such that full year organic revenue growth will be positive, albeit towards the lower end of the previously anticipated low single digit range. Underlying costs are similarly at the lower end of expectations and hence on a comparable basis adjusted profit before tax is expected to be in line with previous guidance.
These results will be impacted by the adoption in the year of the IFRS 15 revenue recognition standard. As previously disclosed at the time of the interim results announcement in February, adoption of IFRS 15 for the year to 30 June 2018 had a £0.5m negative impact on previously reported full year revenue and adjusted EBITA. It is anticipated that the corresponding impact of adoption of IFRS 15 for the year to 30 June 2019 will be slightly higher than for the prior year due mainly to growth in revenue from on-line training programmes.
Cashflow generation in the second half of the year has been strong and expectations for year end net debt remain unchanged. Adoption of IFRS 15 has no impact on cash or cash generation.
The preliminary announcement of the Group's full year results to 30 June 2019 is expected to be published on 19 September 2019.
Organic revenue growth for the full year in the Risk & Compliance division is expected to be in line with our mid-single digit growth aspiration. Good growth momentum has continued in the main Compliance business during H2 with strong demand for both on-line courses and in-house programmes.
In the Healthcare division, revenue performance has continued to improve, with an expectation that full year organic revenue growth will be around 1% with a stronger second half after the 5% organic decline in H1. The improvement comes partly from new business sales performance in the UK Healthcare business, which is expected to grow by mid-single digit percentage year on year. The second half in Healthcare has also seen a strong performance in US Healthcare due in part to a record attendance at the flagship RISE Nashville event that was held in March.
Market conditions for the Professional businesses have proved challenging in Q4 with the Brexit delay and uncertainties over the current political climate in the UK resulting in lower demand for training from legal and accountancy clients. This is expected to result in a low single digit organic decline in revenues for the Professional division for the full year after a flat first half. Recent investments in new products and internal systems means the division is well placed to benefit when market demand improves once the political situation is resolved and there is clarity on ongoing laws and regulations.
As announced on 16 May 2019, the Board is pleased to welcome Mark Milner who will be joining the Group as Chief Executive Officer on 1 July 2019. At the same time, Martin Morgan, currently Interim Executive Chairman will revert to his previous position as Non-executive Chairman.
The information contained within this announcement is deemed to constitute inside information as stipulated under the Market Abuse Regulations (EU) No. 596/2014. Upon the publication of this announcement this inside information is now considered to be in the public domain.
For further information, please contact:
Wilmington plc 020 7490 0049
Martin Morgan, Interim Executive Chairman
Richard Amos, Chief Financial Officer
FTI Consulting 020 3727 1000
Charles Palmer / Dwight Burden / Leah Dudley
Notes to Editors
Wilmington plc is the recognised knowledge leader and partner of choice for information, education and networking in Risk & Compliance, Healthcare and Professional areas. Wilmington employs close to 1,000 people and has customers in 120 countries. Wilmington plc is a premium listed company on the main market of the London Stock Exchange.
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