(Adds CEO, analyst comments)
By Li-mei Hoang
LONDON May 19 British outsourcer Mitie
reported a 4.3 percent rise in full-year pretax profit on
Monday, beating average analysts' expectations, and was
confident of building on its track record of producing
sustainable, profitable growth.
Mitie, which runs services from maintenance and cleaning to
baggage screening at London's Heathrow airport, said it expected
opportunities in the outsourcing market to grow, particularly in
Britain, its biggest market, where the economy is picking up.
"The outlook in the next five years in the UK particularly
(is) becoming increasingly positive," CEO Ruby McGregor-Smith
The company, which generates 64 percent of group revenue
from the private sector, said it will focus on driving growth by
pursuing larger outsourcing contracts after it won a 180 million
pound deal to run two UK immigration centres for the British
government in February.
"We see in the long-term more public sector opportunities,"
Larger rivals in outsourcing G4S and Serco,
who have long had high-value contracts with the British
government, have faced heavy criticism after an audit showed
both firms had charged the British taxpayer for tagging
criminals who were not being monitored.
Mitie reported a 8.2 percent rise in full-year group revenue
and raised its total dividend for the year by 6.8 percent to 11
pence per share. Pretax profit rose to 113.3 million pounds
($191 million) for the year to end-March. This compared with an
average estimate of 110.4 million in a Thomson Reuters poll of
The company said its order book for the year ahead stood at
8.7 billion and that it had secured 84 percent of revenue for
the coming year.
"The shape of the group has changed significantly in recent
years, and the business is now operating in more attractive
markets," Cantor Fitzgerald analyst Caroline de La Soujeole
The company is aiming to expand its activities in the
healthcare market. It is getting out of mechanical and
electrical engineering construction and is cutting exposure to
part of its former asset management business.
Exceptional losses from its mechanical and electrical
engineering construction business were 13.6 million. In
addition, the company said the reduction of its exposure to the
design and build element of its former asset management business
would see a one-off exceptional charge of 25.4 million.
Shares in Mitie were up 2.1 percent to 317 pence by 1104
GMT, making it one of the biggest gainers in the FTSE 250
($1 = 0.5942 British Pounds)
(Reporting by Li-mei Hoang, Editing by Paul Sandle and Jane