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Michael Page International PLC, a U.K.-based professional staffing firm, reported full-year 2012 revenue in its Americas operations fell 7.8 percent to £98.6 million (US$159.2 million) from £106.9 million in 2011. The decrease was 1.3 percent in constant currency.
Approximately two-thirds of Michael Page’s Americas business is in Latin America, with the rest in North America. The economy in Brazil — the staffing provider’s largest Americas business and its fourth largest country in gross profit terms — slowed towards the end of 2011 and throughout the first half of 2012, quickly impacting hiring decisions and therefore Michael Page’s business.
Meanwhile, difficulties in the financial services sector impacted results in North America. Year-on-year gross profit was down by 3 percent in constant currency in the first half. The company reported it strengthened significantly the management team in the region and the early signs of these changes are promising.
Total full-year revenue at Michael Page was £989.9 million (US$1.60 billion), down 2.9 percent (up 0.3 percent in constant currency) compared to revenue of £1.02 billion in 2011.
“Trading became more challenging in the second half of the year as business confidence deteriorated,” said Steve Ingham, chief executive of PageGroup. “Decision-making processes and time-to-hire lengthened, shortening earnings visibility.”
Gross margin fell to 53.2 percent in 2012 from 54.3 percent in 2011, largely because of the shift in the mix of business due to the growth in temporary compared to permanent placements. Gross margin for temporary placements was 20.6 percent in 2012 compared to 20.4 percent in 2011.
Michael Page has operations throughout the world and ranked No. 23 on Staffing Industry Analysts’ 2012 list of largest global staffing firms.