FINANCIALS: InterQuest sees revenue fall 6%

Technology recruiter InterQuest Group has seen revenue drop 6%, according to unaudited interim results for the six months ended 30 June 2017.

The results, released late last week, reveal revenue fell to £69.1m in H1 2017 from £73.8m in H1 2016, though net fee income increased 2% to £11.2m from £11m, with the group reducing net debt to £3.3m from £9.9m over the same period.

The period also saw Chisbridge, a company set up by InterQuest chairman Gary Ashworth, CEO Chris Eldridge and chief financial officer David Bygrave, launch their bid to buy the InterQuest, valuing the group at 42p per share.

This July saw the board of Chisbridge achieve the shareholder backing it needs to acquire the group.

Commenting on the group’s performance over the period, CEO Chris Eldridge said: “The group has generated profit before tax, share-based payments and non-recurring costs of £1m, a reduction from £1.3m in the same period in 2016.

“Like-for-like profit before tax, share-based payments and non-recurring costs, excluding Rees Draper Wright acquired in August 2016, amounted to £500k – a reduction of 62%.

“The group continues its transformation programme at ECOM, which has seen the division's profits grow marginally in the period following a non-cash impairment charge of £3.2m in the prior year due to a significant reduction in profitability. 

“The financial services, analytics, networks and public sector have seen a decline in demand compared to the prior period which has impacted our results for the year.

“We have added a further client to our Solutions business and we continue to develop our business geographically focusing on higher margin opportunities as evidenced by the fact that our contract recruitment margins and average permanent placement fees have increased during the period.”

Also commenting chairman Gary Ashworth said: “The group’s results for the first half of 2017 continue to reflect the challenging nature of the UK staffing business during the ongoing Brexit uncertainty and are below our expectations.

“Rees Draper Wright has given the group a platform to expand into the US market and we have invested in that market by expanding the InterQuest offering into our New York office.  

“A structural change in the senior management at the end of 2016 and early 2017 has meant further restructuring of certain divisions, which will take some time to develop but which we estimate will contribute to profits in the medium and long term.”

The group also announced it has appointed audit, tax and consulting services provider RSM UK Audit as its auditors.

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