Icap sees revenues and profits slip in thin markets

Source: Icap

ICAP plc (IAP.L), the world's leading interdealer broker and provider of post trade risk and information services, today announced its audited results for the year ended 31 March 2012.

Group financial highlights:

Group revenue from continuing operations decreased by 3% to £1,681m with profit increased by 1% to £354m in line with guidance

Post trade risk and information revenue increased 13% to a record £208m and produced operating profit of £91m up 15% - ICAP's strongest performance to date

A record high operating profit for our electronic business of £127m up 4%, while revenue of £301m decreased by 1%

Electronic and post trade risk and information contributed 59% of operating profit

£20m cost savings delivered this year

Significant further run-rate savings expected of at least £50m per annum by the end of March 2014

The Group's operating profit margin was 22% (2011: 22%), unchanged on the prior year

Statutory EPS (basic) down 26% to 21.1p; EPS (adjusted basic)* up 1% to 40.1p
Ongoing free cash flow of £268m (31 March 2011 - £210m), representing a profit conversion of 103%

The directors recommend a final dividend of 16.00p per ICAP share which will be paid on 20 July 2012 to shareholders on the register on 29 June 2012. The full-year dividend will be 22.00p per share, an increase of 2.05p per share reflecting confidence in ICAP's medium-term prospects.

Michael Spencer, Group Chief Executive Officer, said: "ICAP delivered a solid performance in 2011/12 against a difficult economic environment. The fact that we maintained profitability in a year when trading volumes were under such pressure is testament to the effectiveness of our diversified business, our global presence, our people and the actions we took to manage our cost base as market conditions changed.

"In the last quarter of our financial year we saw an improvement in risk appetite in some markets. However activity in April and early May was slow with the ongoing euro crisis and regulatory uncertainty depressing trading volumes. Some resolution on these important issues would give a big and welcome lift to market sentiment. We reduced costs last year and are embarking on a structural overhaul that will result in further significant savings over the next two years.

"Wholesale financial markets play a vital role in global economic development. As the world's leading interdealer broker and infrastructure provider to these markets, ICAP is playing a central role in their evolution and long-term growth and is uniquely positioned to prosper. Our perspective helps inform regulators and policymakers as they implement reform. We believe we have a responsibility to help create more transparent, efficient and safer financial markets that support the global economy. Having continually invested across all our businesses, especially in technology, we are in a good position to benefit from changing customer and regulatory requirements, giving us a significant competitive advantage as we look forward. We continue to maintain our entrepreneurial edge and have the proven appetite and ability to innovate and develop new products and services. We also remain focused on markets with structurally higher growth.

Our efficient conversion of profit to cash has enabled the directors to recommend a final dividend of 16.00p which will result in an increase of 2.05p in the full year dividend. Our strong balance sheet and diversified business give us options when we look at where best to invest for the future. This will ensure ICAP is extremely well placed when markets normalise."

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