HSS Hire Group plc ("HSS" or the "Group") provides the following trading update ahead of its Annual General Meeting later today.
Building on the encouraging momentum in Q1 2021, trading has continued to improve since the Group reported its 2020 year end results, with underlying1 revenues in Q2 2021 at 102% of FY19 levels.
Q2 2021 EBITDA2 and EBITA2 remain ahead of the comparable FY19 levels with the Group's digitally-led, lower cost operating model delivering further margin expansion. Based on the performance in the second quarter, EBITDA2 for 2021 is expected to be slightly ahead of market expectations and EBITA2 is now expected to be materially ahead of expectations, including the benefit of reduced depreciation following the change in operating model.
Cash collection has also remained strong throughout the quarter and, combined with improved profitability, we expect to achieve our net debt leverage2 2021 exit rate target of below 2x at the half-year.
The Board will provide further details on Group performance at HSS' 2021 half year results update, expected to be held in September 2021.
Steve Ashmore, Chief Executive, commented:
"We are very pleased with how the Group has continued to perform. Our strong operating profit performance, ahead of 2019 levels, is testament to the effectiveness of our digital strategy. Our embedded technology platforms combined with our partnership with builders merchants has allowed us to maintain national coverage while significantly lowering fixed costs and improving margins. Supported by very strong cash collection, we anticipate achieving our 2021 net debt leverage target of below 2x six months ahead of schedule. This strong performance has given us further confidence in our digital-focused model as we continue to build on our differentiated commercial proposition and capitalise on the market opportunities ahead of us."