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UK – SThree Drives 2012 Revenue

28 January 2013

Specialist ICT staffing company SThree (STHR:LSE) saw revenue rise +6.5% to £577.5 million for the year ended 25 November 2012 despite a “steady deterioration in macro-economic confidence” and falling client demand, the firm reported on Monday.

SThree is among the five-largest IT staffing companies in Europe competing with Hays, Randstad, Experis and Adecco, according to new research by Staffing Industry Analysts.

Last year, gross profit grew by +5% to £205.3 million while operating profit dropped -16% to £25.1 million. Net income, profit attributable to shareholders, was down -17% to £16.8 million. The firm said profitability was impacted by declining consultant productivity and ongoing investment in the company.

“Given current levels of global economic and political uncertainty, predicting the kind of market conditions the Group will face during 2013 with any accuracy is extremely difficult,” the firm said.

In the period, gross profit from the UK & Ireland fell -1% to £70.8 million. Gross profit from continental Europe was up +1% at £99.4 million, with a robust performance from Germany (+7%) offsetting a -9% decline in the Benelux countries. Gross profit from Rest of the World countries grew by +36% to £35.0 million, particularly in Australia and the US.

Contract recruitment outperformed the firm’s permanent recruitment business. Goss profit from temporary staffing was up +7.6% to £101.7 million while gross profit from permanent staffing grew by +2.6% to £103.6 million. The number of contract runners at the end of 2012 improved by +9% to 5,122 from 4,692 a year ago. During the year, permanent placements fell by -1% to 7,343.

In early trading, the company’s share price was down -0.3% to 344 pence, a +33.3% increase from a year ago and -1.5% below its 52-week high of 349.41 pence seen earlier this month. The firm has a market value of £417.40 million.

SThree is a multi-brand business model, specialising in accountancy & finance, banking, engineering & energy, and pharmaceuticals & biotechnology, as well as their original field of ICT.

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