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Netherlands – USG People sees further decline in Q1

March 29 2012

USG People (USG:AEX), the Netherlands-based multi-brand staffing, secondment and HR services group, said at an analysts meeting yesterday that the firm’s turnover had so far firmly declined in 2012. In January and February this year the firm recorded lower revenues of -11% when compared to the same period last year. 

At the start of March USG noted a downward trend in the final months of 2011 which  continued throughout the first two months in 2012. The staffing group also reported that revenues in Q4 2011 declined due to lower demand in the industrial and the Dutch public sectors, although for the full year revenues were up +5%.  

The firm will publish its Q1 results at the end of April and said that the first quarter of 2011 presents a difficult comparison base.

The company anticipates things will brighten up in the coming months, despite struggling with revenues dropping at the beginning of the year.  “Starting from the second quarter of 2012 USG People expects to see a gradual recovery thanks to improved market conditions and as the stepped-up commercial efforts begin to produce results,” the Group commented.

The firm reported that in Q1 2012 the gross margin was “stable” compared to a year ago. “Operating costs were lower than last year, with the decline being fully in line with the previously announced cost savings for 2012. EBITA rose in the first two months of 2012 compared to last year.”

USG People NV provides staffing, secondment, Human Resources (HR) and customer care services and operates in three segments.  General Staffing, which includes Staffing, secondment, recruitment and selection and pool management for call centres, the transport, healthcare and technical sectors. Specialist Staffing, which focuses on administrative, commercial, financial, medical, management support, HR, multilingual and technical staff; and, Professionals, which focuses on qualified and specialist staff in communication and marketing, legal, financial, HR, IT and technical. The firm is the second biggest staffing firm in the Netherlands after Randstad, according to Staffing Industry Analysts.

In early trading this morning, USG People’s share price decreased by -1.09% to €7.78, down -46.24% from a year ago but +72.94% above the 52-week low of €4.50 set on 25 November 2011. This values the company at €645.71 million.

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