2021 Half-Yearly Results:
Business above pre-crisis level
Record half-year operating margin from ordinary activities: 9.6%
Net income attributable to owners of the parent: €15.6 million
Aubay’s Board of Directors, which met on September 15, 2021 under Chairman Christian Aubert, approved the consolidated financial statements for the first six months of 2021. The financial statements have been reviewed by the company’s Statutory Auditors who will shortly issue their reports.
After demonstrating exceptional resilience in 2020, the Group has embarked on a strategy of commercial success. It reported organic growth of 8.5% in the first half of 2021, outstripping the benchmark market.
Operating margin from ordinary activities above projections
Operating margin from ordinary activities stood at 9.6%, the best first-half performance ever achieved in the history of the Group and higher than estimated when the half-yearly results were published in July, thanks in particular to a consultant productivity rate of 93.8% compared to 92.7% at June 30, 2020.
The Group’s operating margin for the period came in at 8.2% for activities in France and 11.1% for activities overseas, compared with 7.5% and 10.1%, respectively, in 2020.
Operating profit of €21.3 million
Operating profit rose 22.4%, after taking into account the cost of performance shares of €0.5 million and a net operating expense of €0.6 million, primarily comprising restructuring expenses, which was lower than in the same prior-year period.
Sharp increase in net income attributable to owners of the parent (6.7% of net margin)
Net income attributable to owners of the parent came in at €15.6 million, a record half-year high for the Group. The tax expense of €5.7 million reflected a decrease in the Group’s average tax rate to 27%.
Net cash (excluding rental liabilities) stable at €44 million
Cash flow stood at €25.5 million or 10.9% of revenue. The change in WCR amounted to negative €14.3 million compared to a negative €4.2 million for the same period of the previous year, in line with the strong growth in revenue and the usual seasonal nature of our business. After taking into account the payment of a dividend in May for an amount of €4.3 million, net cash was stable at €44 million at June 30, 2021, and should significantly increase during the second half of the year.
Proposed interim dividend of €0.34
In light of the strong increase in net income and the Group’s excellent financial position, the Board of Directors has decided to pay an interim dividend of €0.34 per share in respect of 2021. The interim dividend will be paid on November 10, 2021.
Outlook for 2021
Aubay operates on a market that still offers excellent visibility with numerous calls for tender issued by clients. The Group continues to achieve commercial success and productivity remains high. The headcount is still increasing, and is set to hit the 7,000 mark in the short term.
Management is very confident that the following 2021 targets, revised upwards in July, will be achieved:
- Annual revenue of between €456 million and €465 million;
- Operating margin from ordinary activities between 9.5% and 10.5%.
Aubay will publish its 2021 third-quarter revenue on October 20, 2021 after the close of trading.