November 13, 2018 / 7:49 AM / a year ago

UPDATE 1-Experian sees FY organic revenue growth at top end of guidance

(Adds details on results, CEO quote)

Nov 13 (Reuters) - Experian Plc, the world’s biggest credit data company, said on Tuesday it expected full-year organic revenue to come in at the top end of its previous forecast, driven mainly by strength in its North American business.

The blue-chip company said statutory pretax profit fell to $470 million in the six months ended Sept. 30, from $495 million a year earlier, hurt by an increase in foreign exchange losses on the Brazilian real.

“We have started the year well, with first-half organic revenue growth of 8 percent as we expand our data assets, introduce new global products and gain momentum in Consumer Services,” Chief Executive Officer Brian Cassin said.

Experian, which runs 28 credit bureaus globally and offers scoring, software, marketing and internet services, said revenue rose 7 percent to $2.37 billion in the first half, but was slightly higher than the $2.36 billion forecast in a company-supplied consensus estimate of 12 analysts.

Experian and its rivals - Equifax Inc and TransUnion - generate credit reports and scores based on consumers’ borrowing and payment habits, including bankruptcies and court judgements.

Organic revenue growth of 10 percent to $1.43 billion in Experian’s biggest market North America was coupled with strong performances in Latin America, UK and Ireland and EMEA-Asia Pacific.

North America accounts for 57 percent of Experian’s revenue, followed by the UK and Ireland.

A survey here by Consumer Federation of America (CFA) and VantageScore Solutions revealed in June that over the past four years, the percentage of consumers who have obtained at least one credit score has risen significantly.

However, Experian’s growth in the U.S. was in stark contrast to Equifax, which suffered a massive data breach last year and reported lower-than-expected earnings last month, hurt by currency movements and a slowing U.S. mortgage market. (Reporting by Noor Zainab Hussain and Muvija M in Bengaluru; Editing by Gopakumar Warrier and Saumyadeb Chakrabarty)

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