Latest Results

Final Results

‘Strategic IPO objectives met; sustained profitable growth and maiden dividend proposed’

Anexo Group plc (AIM: ANX), the specialist integrated credit hire and legal services provider, announces its maiden set of final results for the year ended 31 December 2018 (the ‘period’ or ‘FY 2018’).

 

 

Financial Highlights

  • Successfully raised £25.0 million1 (before expenses) and admitted to trading on AIM in June 2018
  • Revenue increased by 24.7% to £56.5 million (FY 2017: £45.3 million)
  • Operating profit reported at £15.4 million (2017: £15.1 million), an increase of 2.7%
  • Adjusted2 operating profit before exceptional items slightly ahead of market expectations, rising by 13.9% to £17.2 million (FY 2017: £15.1 million)
  • Adjusted2 operating profit margin reduced marginally to 30.4% (FY 2017: 33.3%)
  • Profit before tax of £14.3 million (2017: £14.6 million), a reduction of 2.0%
  • Adjusted2 profit before tax and exceptional items increased to £16.1 million, (2017: £14.6 million), an increase of 10.3%
  • Adjusted3 basic EPS at 12 pence (FY 2017: 11.4 pence)
  • Proposed final dividend of 1.5 pence per share (FY 2017: Nil)
  • Net assets reported at £75.8 million (FY 2017: £55.6 million) representing an increase of 36.3%
  • Net cash outflow from operating activities to fund growth of £7.9 million (FY 2017: net cash inflow: £1.1 million)
  • Strong net cash balance of £5.5 million at 31 December 2018 (31 December 2017: £0.2 million)
  • Net debt balance at 31 December 2018 was £17.3 million (31 December 2017: £15.0 million)

1. The placing that accompanied Anexo’s admission to AIM raised £25.0 million before expenses, of which £10.0 million was raised for the Group, and £15.0 million for the Selling Shareholders, of which not less than £5.0 million was repaid to the Group.
2. Adjusted operating profit and profit before tax: excludes the costs of Admission to AIM and share‑based payment charges.
3. Adjusted EPS: adjusted PBT less tax at statutory rate divided by the number of shares on a pro forma basis, i.e. assuming that the number of shares in issue immediately post-IPO were in issue through the entire comparative period.

Operational Highlights and KPIs

  • Bolton office opened on 3 December 2018. At 31 December 2018 it had recruited 20 experienced litigators significantly increasing capacity within Bond Turner
  • Focus on settlement rate which continues to move upwards driving increased cash collections
  • Number of new cases funded increased 31.2% to 5,930 (FY 2017: 4,520)
KPI  FY 2018  FY 2017 % movement
Number of vehicles on hire at the year end 1,531  815 +87.9
Average number of vehicles on hire for the year 1,155  894 +29.2
Cash collections from settled cases (£’000s) 58,100  53,973 +7.6
New cases funded (no) 5,930  4,520 +31.2%
Number of senior fee earners at period end 89  66 +34.8
Average number of senior fee earners 76  62 +22.6

 

Commenting on the Final Results, Alan Sellers, Executive Chairman of Anexo Group plc, said:

“We are delighted to report such a strong set of maiden final results which, as announced earlier in January 2019, are ahead of market expectations.  Anexo has successfully demonstrated that the cash raised at IPO has enabled the strategic investment outlined upon Admission, expanding the Credit Hire fleet and growing Anexo’s high quality legal team in order to increase the number of processed claims whilst increasing cash generation from cases settled.

“The investment is clearly supporting near-term profitable growth across the business with the strong financial performance, coupled with the ever-increasing UK credit hire and legal claims market, giving the Board confidence in our ability to scale and generate near term returns for our shareholders as demonstrated by the maiden proposed final dividend in line with the Board’s stated intention at Admission.

Anexo remains extremely well positioned to grow its market share and take advantage of the opportunities available to it.  The Board views the current financial year with considerable optimism.”

 

Executive Chairman's Statement

On behalf of the Board, I am pleased to introduce Anexo’s maiden set of full year results since the Group’s admission to trading on AIM in June 2018, which has enabled us to accelerate our growth and enhance market share.  The Group has performed strongly in the financial year ended 31 December 2018, with significant growth compared to FY 2017 and Anexo has excellent prospects for FY 2019 and beyond.

Group performance

We delivered a strong performance across the Group in our first financial year on AIM and it was pleasing to see revenues growing across the operational businesses.  Group revenues increased from £45.3 million in FY 2017 to £56.5 million in FY 2018, generating growth of 24.7% year on year, a result which was ahead of market expectations.

Credit Hire division

Anexo has deployed an element of the funds raised at IPO to expand the fleet, reaching 1,946 vehicles available for hire at period end (FY 2017: 1,066), an 82.6% increase on the prior year with a similar trend seen in the number of vehicles on hire to clients which increased from 815 to 1,531 during FY 2018 (an increase of 87.9%).

In particular, the Group has witnessed growth in our motorcycle business, facilitated by the strategic investment in the fleet.

The high utilisation rates of these vehicles and bikes on the road (which is typically in the region of 75% to 80%) demonstrates the strong demand for Anexo’s credit hire services across the UK and the quality of the Group’s sales staff which are supporting the expansion of our market share.  These trends are even more pleasing given we have only had access to the IPO funding for part of the year.

Furthermore, as outlined at the time of the IPO, the increased access to financial resources is accelerating Anexo’s growth strategy as we are able to employ additional local sales representatives, who are proven to generate higher revenues with increased efficiency when working closer to home, whilst broadening Anexo’s geographic footprint in the UK.

Legal Services division

A significant portion of the IPO funds were targeted at increasing capacity within Bond Turner, our legal services business.  This was to facilitate the scaling of the Credit Hire business whilst improving cash generation.  The expanded capacity at Bond Turner has been supported by the opening of our new office in Bolton in December 2018, where recruitment has progressed well and the number of highly skilled, vastly experienced litigators continues to grow.  In fact, we have managed to increase the number of senior fee earners within the Group from 66 at the end of FY 2017 to 89 at 31st December 2018, an increase of almost 35% during the year in line with our recruitment policy.

With further significant investment planned into FY 2019, these additional staff are expected to provide a significant increase to the number of cases settled during FY 2019 and ultimately the level of cash recovered from our significant portfolio of cases.

With the support of our larger legal team, it is pleasing to see that Anexo has been able to increase the number of new cases funded by 31.2% between FY 2017 and FY 2018, having completed just over 5,200 credit hire claims during FY 2018.

As a result of the factors set out above, I am pleased to be able to report to shareholders that the Group achieved an adjusted profit before taxation of £16.1 million compared to £14.6 million last year, an increase of 10.3%, further details around the Group’s performance are included within the Financial Review.

Dividends

The Board is pleased to propose a final dividend of 1.5 pence per share, which if approved at the Annual General Meeting to be held on 12 June 2019 will be paid on 28 June 2019 to those shareholders on the register at the close of business on 21 June 2019.  The shares will become ex-dividend on 20 June 2019.  No interim dividend was paid or proposed by Anexo Group Plc.

Corporate Governance

Anexo values corporate governance highly and the Board believes that effective corporate governance is integral to the delivery of the Group’s corporate strategy, the generation of shareholder value and the safeguard of our shareholders’ long-term interests.

As Chairman, I am responsible for the leadership of the Board and for ensuring its effectiveness in all aspects of its role.  The Board is responsible for the Group’s strategic development, monitoring and achievement of its business objectives, oversight of risk and maintaining a system of effective corporate governance.  I will continue to draw upon my experience to help ensure that the Board delivers maximum shareholder value.

Our employees and stakeholders

The strong performance of the Group reflects the dedication and quality of the Group’s employees.  We rely on the skills, experience and commitment of our team to drive the business forward. Their enthusiasm, innovation and performance remain key assets of the Group and are vital to its future success.  On behalf of the Board, I would like to thank all of our employees, customers, suppliers, business partners and shareholders for their continued support over the last year.

Outlook

The outlook for FY 2019 is positive and we remain confident that management decisions and investment will result in increasing claims generation and an expanding market share for our Credit Hire division.

As we continue to expand the Legal Services division, we expect revenues to increase.  Recruitment has continued to progress well in Anexo’s new Bolton office and we are close to finalising the terms of contracts with a number of high quality litigators.  The additional capacity is driving our settlement numbers and rates and we believe this will significantly improve cash generation in FY 2019 by fully leveraging the potential in our case book and realise its potential as a significant cash generating asset.  Having only opened the office in early December 2018, we had successfully recruited 20 legal staff into Bolton by the year end.

Trading in the year to date has been in line with the Board’s expectations.  We are in final negotiations with yet more high quality litigators who wish to join our growing Bond Turner practice in Bolton, which is helping us to increase the number of claims processed by the Group.

Anexo remains extremely well positioned to grow its market share and take advantage of the opportunities available to it.  The Board views the current financial year with considerable optimism.

 

Alan Sellers
Executive Chairman
9 April 2019

 

Financial Review

Basis of Preparation

Anexo Group Plc was admitted to AIM on 20 June 2018 (the ‘IPO’).  Given the Company was formed on 27 March 2018 and acquired its subsidiaries on 15 June 2018, these are the first consolidated statutory financial statements.  In order to provide an understanding of the trading performance of the Group, comparative numbers have been presented on a basis consistent with the Group being in existence through FY 2018 and FY 2017.

In addition, to provide comparability across reporting periods, the results within this Financial Review are presented on an ‘underlying’ basis, adjusting for the £1.4 million cost of this year’s IPO transaction and the £0.4 million charge recorded for share-based payments.

A reconciliation between underlying and reported results is provided at the end of this Financial Review.  This Financial Review also incorporates and constitutes the Strategic Report of the Group.

Revenue

In FY 2018 Anexo successfully increased revenues across both of its divisions, Credit Hire and Legal Services, resulting in Group revenues of £56.5 million, representing a 24.7% increase over the prior year (FY 2017: £45.3 million).

During FY 2018 we provided vehicles to 5,215 individuals (FY 2017: 4,586) an increase of 13.7%.  Much of this growth has arisen within the motorcycle side of our business and of the increase in claims (629 – 13.7%) between FY 2017 and FY 2018.  The number of motorcycle claims increased from 2,260 in FY 2017 to 2,923 in FY 2018, an increase of 663 (29.3%).  This growth follows the strategic decision to expand the McAMS division alongside our continued investment into the motorcycle community, with the sponsorship of the McAMS Yamaha team in the British Superbike Championship continuing into FY 2019.

Growth has also been reported within the Legal Services division, revenues rising from £20.5 million in FY 2017 to £22.5 million in FY 2018 (an increase of 9.8%).

Expansion of the headcount in Bond Turner is critical to increasing both revenues and cash settlements into the Group and the opening of the Bolton Office in December 2018 provides a crucial platform for growth in both factors.  By the end of December 2018, we had recruited 20 staff into the Bolton Office, of which 17 are senior fee earners, taking the total number of staff employed in Bond Turner to 267 (FY 2017: 187), of which 89 are senior fee earners (FY 2017: 66).  This investment has resulted in an increase in senior fee earners of 23 (34.8%) significantly adding to our settlement and cash recovery capacity.

Gross Profits

Gross profits were reported at £40.3 million (at a margin of 71.4%) in FY 2018, increasing from £34.0 million in FY 2017 (at a margin of 74.9%).  Whilst the reported results indicate a reduction in margin, staffing costs within Bond Turner are reported within Administrative Expenses, gross profit in effect being reported at 100% within Bond Turner.  This reduction reflects the change in the mix of Credit Hire to total revenues which increased between FY 2017 (54.8%) and FY 2018 (60.2%).

Gross profits for the Credit Hire division reached £19.9 million in FY 2018 (at a margin of 58.5%) rising from £14.9 million in FY 2017 (at a margin of 60.2%), the slight reduction reflecting an increase in vehicle insurance premiums year on year.

Operating Costs

Administrative expenses before exceptional items increased year-on-year, reaching £21.6 million in FY 2018 (FY 2017: £18.1 million) an increase of £3.5 million (19.3%) reflecting the continued investment in staffing costs within Bond Turner to drive settlement of cases and cash collections; staffing costs increased to £8.7 million (FY 2017: £6.2 million) an increase of £2.5 million, the balance of the increase reflecting investment in staff and infrastructure to allow the Group to meet its growth aspirations, as well as to meet its requirements as a PLC.

During FY 2018 we continued to invest heavily in our motorcycle fleet, a significant element of which is capitalised and depreciated, whereas a lesser element is sourced under operating lease arrangements (as are all of the car fleet) and charged to the profit and loss accounts as incurred. Total capex on vehicles reached £2.9 million in FY 2018 (FY 2017: £1.3 million) resulting in an increased depreciation charge in the year of £1.6 million (FY 2017: £0.8 million).

EBITDA

Adjusted EBITDA reached £18.7 million in FY 2018, increasing from £15.8 million in FY 2017 (18.4%), the result, as previously announced was ahead of management expectations. To provide a better guide to the underlying business performance, adjusted EBITDA excludes share-based payment charges, professional and other costs charged to the profit and loss account in relation to the listing along with depreciation, interest and tax from the measure of profit.

The GAAP measure of the profit before interest and tax was £15.4 million (FY 2017: £15.1 million) reflecting the non-cash share-based payment charge of £0.4 million (FY 2017: £Nil) as well as the professional and other fees arising from the listing (£1.4 million).  Where we have provided adjusted figures, they are after add-back of these two items.

EPS and Dividend

Statutory basic EPS is 10.4 pence (FY 2017: 11.4 pence).  Statutory diluted EPS is 10.2 pence (FY 2017: 11.1 pence).  The adjusted EPS is 12.0 pence (FY 2017: 11.4 pence).  The adjusted diluted EPS is 11.8 pence (FY 2017: 11.1 pence).  The adjusted figures exclude the effect of share based payments and the fees associated with the listing.

Following our first period end trading as an AIM quoted group a final dividend of 1.5 pence per share has been recommended by the Board (FY 2017: Nil).  No interim dividend was either paid or proposed by Anexo Group Plc since incorporation.  This dividend, if approved at the Annual General Meeting to be held on 12 June 2019, will be paid on 28 June 2019 to those shareholders on the Register at the close of business on 21 June 2019.

Group Statement of Financial Position

The Group’s net assets position is dominated by the balances held within trade and other receivables.  This balance includes credit hire and credit repair debtors and disbursements paid in advance and support of ongoing claims.  The value of the receivables being £165.2 million in FY 2018, rising from £151.5 million in FY 2017.  In accordance with our income recognition policies, provision is made to reduce the carrying value to recoverable amounts, being £76.0 million and £55.9 million respectively, an increase of 36.0%.  This increase reflects the recent trading activity and strategy of the Group and is in line with management expectation.

In addition, the Group has a total of £23.0 million reported as accrued income (FY 2017: £16.3 million) which represents the value attributed to those ongoing hires and claims.

Further investment has been made into the motorcycle fleet in FY 2018 to keep up with demand, with total fixed asset additions totalling £3.5 million in FY 2018 (FY 2017: £1.5 million), the fleet being in part financed with hire purchase, the balance outstanding increasing during FY 2018 to £2.5 million (FY 2017: £1.3 million).

Trade and other payables, including tax and social security increased to £7.2 million compared to £5.4 million at 31st December 2017, an increase of 33.3%.

Net assets at 31st December 2018 reached £75.8 million (FY 2017: £55.6 million).

Cash Flow

Following the AIM listing, the Group utilised the funds raised, alongside increases in debt facilities, to take advantage of the opportunities in the market and increase the number of vehicles on the road alongside a significant investment in the capacity of the legal services business, where the number of senior staff engaged to settle cases and recover cash for the group increased from 66 to 89 during FY 2018 (an increase of 34.8%).  Whilst this strategy improves profitability and absorbs working capital in the short term, it is anticipated that the real financial benefits to the Group will come through in FY 2019.

Fleet investment was most significant on the McAMS side of the Credit Hire division, where the number of vehicles on the road increased from 563 at the start of the period to 1,011 at 31 December 2018, an increase of 80%.  The number of cars and vans in this division also saw significant growth, with vehicles on the road increasing from 252 to 520 during FY 2018 (an increase of 106.0%), demonstrating the significant opportunities available to the Group as a whole.

In FY 2018 the Group reported a net cash outflow from operating activities of £7.9 million (FY 2017: Cash inflow £1.1 million).  The total variance between the profits reported in FY 2018 of £11.4 million (FY 2017: £12.5 million) and the net cash flow from operating activities reached £19.3 million (FY 2017: £11.3 million) and included the investment made into new cases across both the Credit Hire and Legal Services divisions, absorbing a net £20.5 million of funds in FY 2018 (FY 2017: £12.4 million).  During the year total cash receipts increased to £58.1 million (FY 2017: £54.0 million) an increase of 7.6% year on year.

Investment in the motorcycle fleet continued into FY 2018, accounting for the majority of the £3.5 million of fixed asset additions (FY 2017: £1.5 million), funded from cash flow and the draw of an additional £2.6 million of hire purchase funding (FY 2017: £1.2 million).

As previously reported, the Group generated a net £9.3 million from the AIM listing, alongside additional debt funding of £4.0 million (FY 2017: £6.8 million).  As a result of the above, the Group reported a net increase in cash and cash equivalents of £0.5 million in 2018 (FY 2017: £2.5 million).


 

Net Debt, Cash and Financing

Cash balances increased during FY 2018 and at 31 December 2018 reached £5.5 million (FY 2017: £0.2 million), this increase reflects additional funding facilities secured and drawn during FY 2018, net debt reported at £17.3 million at 31 December 2018 (FY 2017: £15.0 million).

Borrowings increased during the year to fund the additional working capital investment in the Group’s portfolio of claims, the balance rising from £15.2 million in FY 2017 to £22.8 million at the end of FY 2018.  The two principal facilities include an invoice discounting facility within Direct Accident Management Limited, (and secured on the credit hire and repair receivables) and a revolving credit facility within Bond Turner Limited.

The Group is in advanced discussions with a specialist legal assets funder to extend and increase existing facilities and secure additional funding from the Group’s current asset base to support growth across all aspects of the business operations.  This extended the current facilities which expire in November 2019.  This funding is intended to support the Group’s working capital as it continues to expand its legal capacity and increase the rate of cash conversion.

Reconciliation of Underlying and Reported IFRS Results
In establishing the underlying operating profit, the costs adjusted include £1.4 million (FY 2017: £Nil) related to the cost of the Company’s Admission to AIM that was completed in June 2018 (the ‘IPO costs’) and £0.4 million of costs related to share-based payments (FY 2017: £Nil).

A reconciliation between underlying and reported results is provided below:

    Year to December 2018  Year to December 2017 
Underling
£’000s 
IPO Costs
£’000s 
Share-based payment £’000s  Reported
£’000s 
Reported and underlying
£’000s 
Revenue 56,505 - - 56,505 45,302
Gross profit 40,337 - - 40,337 33.953
Other operating costs (net) (23,168) (1,411) (384) (24,963) (18,879)
Operating profit 17,169 (1,411) (384) 15,374 15,074
Finance costs (net) (1,090) - - (1,090) (492)
Profit before tax 16,079 (1,411) (384) 14,284 14,582
Depreciation 1,574 - - 1,574 760
EBITDA 18,743 (1,411) (384) 16,948 15,834

By order of the Board.

Mark Bringloe
Chief Financial Officer
9 April 2019

 

Consolidated Statement of Comprehensive Income
for the year ended 31 December 2018

    2018     2017
  Note    £’000s   £’000s
         
Revenue   56,505    45,302
Cost of sales   (16,168)    (11,349)
Gross profit     40,337    33,953
          
Depreciation & loss on disposal   (1,574)    (760)
Administrative expenses before exceptional items   (21,594)    (18,119)
Operating profit before exceptional items    17,169    15,074
          
Share based payment charge 3 (384)    -
Non-recurring administrative expenses 3 (1,411)    -
Operating profit  3 15,374    15,074
          
Finance income   -    -
Finance costs   (1,090)    (492)
Net financing expense   (1,090)    (492)
          
Profit before tax     14,284    14,582
Taxation   (2,879)    (2,095)
Profit and total comprehensive income for the year attributable to the owners of the company    11,405    12,487
         
Earnings per share          
Basic earnings per share (pence) 4 10.4    11.4
          
Diluted earnings per share (pence) 4 10.2    11.1
          

 

The above results were derived from continuing operations.

 

Consolidated Statement of Financial Position
as at 31 December 2018

    2018     2017
Assets  Note £’000s     £’000s
Non-current assets          
Property, plant and equipment 5 3,270    1,520
    3,270    1,520
Current assets           
Trade and other receivables 6 101,445    80,593
Cash and cash equivalents   5,532    202
    106,977    80,795
          
Total assets     110,247    82,315
          
Equity and liabilities           
Equity           
Share capital   55    50
Share premium   9,235    40
Share based payments reserve   384    -
Retained earnings   66,127    55,542
Equity attributable to the owners of the Company    75,801    55,632
          
Non-current liabilities          
Other interest-bearing loans and borrowings 7 870    5,475
Deferred tax liabilities   -    -
    870    5,475
          
Current liabilities           
Bank overdraft 7 12,536    7,688
Other interest-bearing loans and borrowings 7 9,402    2,085
Trade and other payables   7,223    5,395
Corporation tax liability   4,415    6,040
    33,576    21,208
          
Total liabilities    34,446    26,683
          
Total equity and liabilities    110,247    82,315

 

Consolidated Statement of Changes in Equity
for the year ended 31 December 2018

  Share
Capital 
 Share
Premium 
Share Based
Payment
Reserve
Retained
Earnings 
Total 
  £’000s  £’000s  £’000s  £’000s  £’000s 
           
At 1 January 2017 50 40 - 46,756 46,846
Profit for the year and total comprehensive income - - - 12,487 12,487
Dividends - - - (3,701) (3,701)
           
At 31 December 2017 50 40 - 55,542 55,632
Profit for the year and total comprehensive income - - - 11,405 11,405
Issue of share capital 5 - - - 5
Increase in share premium - 9,195 - - 9,195
Creation of share based payment reserve - - 384 - 384
Dividends - - - (820) (820)
           
At 31 December 2018 55 9,235 384 66,127 75,801

 

Consolidated Statement of Cash Flows
for the year ended 31 December 2018

    2018     2017
    £’000s     £’000s
Cash flows from operating activities         
Profit for the year   11,405    12,487
Adjustments for:         
Depreciation and loss on disposal   1,574    730
Financial expense   1,090    492
Taxation   2,879    2,095
    16,948    15,804
Working capital adjustments          
(Increase)/decrease in trade and other receivables   (20,871)    (12,360)
(Decrease)/increase in trade and other payables   1,828    (329)
Cash generated from operations   (2,095)    3,115
          
Interest paid   (1,090)    (492)
Tax paid   (4,738)    (1,475)
Net cash from operating activities   (7,923)    1,148
          
Cash flows from investing activities          
Proceeds from sale of property, plant and equipment   170    183
Acquisition of property, plant and equipment   (3,493)    (1,473)
Net cash from investing activities   (3,323)    (1,290)
          
Cash flows from financing activities          
Net proceeds from the issue of share capital   9,235    -
Proceeds from new loan   4,016    6,825
Repayment of borrowings   (1,931)    (1,217)
Payment of finance lease liabilities   (1,362)    (425)
New finance lease arrangements   2,590    1,205
Dividends paid   (820)    (3,701)
Net cash from financing activities   11,728    2,687
          
Net increase in cash and cash equivalents     482    2,545
Cash and cash equivalents at 1 January    (7,486)    (10,031)
          
Cash and cash equivalents at 31 December    (7,004)    (7,486)

 

Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements
for the year ended 31 December 2018

The notes are available in the printable pdf of the results. To download it, please click here

 

Page last updated: 9 April 2019