LONDON Aug 27 Contracts from the soccer World
Cup and Commonwealth Games helped marketing group Chime
Communications Plc to increase first-half operating
profit by 50 percent, the company said on Wednesday.
Chime has been building up its sports marketing operations
and has added former Olympic champion Sebastian Coe to its board
after buying his consultancy business almost two years ago.
"We have had a strong first half driven by our involvement
in the Winter Olympics, the FIFA World Cup and the Commonwealth
Games," said Chief Executive Christopher Satterthwaite.
Chime, which also has advertising and public relations
divisions, said operating profit rose by 50 percent to 17.2
million pounds ($28.5 million) in the six months to the end of
The company struck a note of caution in its outlook, saying
there may need to be "some adjustment" if the pound remained
strong against the dollar and the Brazilian currency.
However, Chime shares rose almost four percent to 321 pence
by 0825 GMT, valuing the company at just over 300 million
Brokerage Peel Hunt upgraded the shares to "buy" from
"hold", saying it was positive that the company had started to
negotiate contracts for the 2016 Olympics.
Chime boosted its presence in motor racing last year when it
bought Just Marketing Inc for $71 million, a deal criticised by
Chime shareholder WPP which has a stake of around 17.5
percent in the company.
"WPP informed us in November 2013 that they were exploring a
sale of their stake. We have had no further notification," Chime
said in the earnings release.
($1 = 0.6037 British Pounds)
(Writing by Keith Weir; Editing by Mark Potter)