Property Franchise Group PLC (The) – Half Year Trading Update and Directorate Update
The Property Franchise Group PLC (AIM:TPFG) today issues the following trading update ahead of publishing its interim results on Tuesday, 10 September 2019.
The Group’s traditional high street brands continued to make solid progress, generating growth in revenues of 3% over the same period in 2018. This progress was driven by improvements in lettings, and has been delivered despite the reduced activity levels in the sales market. Pleasingly, its online brand, EweMove, generated growth in revenues of 11%.
The Group’s total revenue for the six-month period was £5.5m, of which Management Service Fees were £4.6m, a Group record for first half year trading (2018: £4.4 million). Management Service Fees represent the Group’s key, recurring revenue stream and this growth demonstrates the strength of the franchise model. Total tenanted managed properties served rose 6% to c. 56,000.
The Company continues to generate free cash and maintain a strong balance sheet, with net cash of £2.8m at 30 June 2019 (30 June 2018: £0.5m).
The Board is confident that trading will continue to be in line with market expectations for the full financial year ending 31 December 2019.
After 16 years with the business, Ian Wilson, Chief Executive, has informed the Board of his intention to retire at the end of calendar year 2020. The Board has commenced a formal process to identify a suitably qualified successor. The timescales agreed will allow ample time for both this process and a smooth, orderly handover period.
Over the next 17 months Ian will continue to lead the Group towards its aim of achieving an increased UK market share of lettings and estate agency transactions, using its proven franchise model and multiple clearly differentiated property brands.
Chief Executive Ian Wilson commented,
“We are pleased to continue to deliver revenue growth across both our high street brands and also our online brand, EweMove, in what has been a tough market. Although we have yet to see the full impact of the tenant fee ban which came into force on 1st June 2019, we are confident of the actions being undertaken by our franchise network to mitigate the impact on revenues. We will continue to leverage our scale and strong financial position to capitalise on the opportunities both on the high street and online.
“After many fruitful years at the helm of Martin & Co and then The Property Franchise Group, I have made the Board aware of my intention to retire at the end of next year. I have seen the Company through its IPO and its successful years since. Throughout this time the business has shown the strength of its franchise model, the quality of its Board and management team, and the resolve and determination to succeed of its franchisees. I look forward to continuing to ensure that the business is well positioned to flourish for many years to come.“