FINANCIALS: SThree sees rise in group profit but fall in UK & Ireland growth

SThree has seen group gross profit rise 8% year-on-year, led by its international operations.

According to a trading update covering the period since 1 December 2017, the international STEM (scientific, technical, engineering and maths) staffing specialist reveals strong growth in Continental Europe. Standout performers, with GP up 15% year-on-year, are the group’s DACH (Germany, Austria and Switzerland) and Netherlands operations.

However, GP growth has been more muted in the US – up 1% on same period last year, while UK & Ireland GP is down 3% on the corresponding period of 2016.

CEO Gary Elden pointed to an “encouraging” start to the new financial year: “Our contract business continues to go from strength to strength, with GP increased by 11% in Q1, driven by continued strong growth in Continental Europe, especially key markets such as the Netherlands and Germany. Growth in contract GP from our life sciences, ICT and energy businesses has also been particularly pleasing.

“As anticipated, the growth rate in our US business reflected the tough prior year comparatives from Q1 2017. The market opportunity in the USA remains very strong and we expect to see an improving performance from this business.

“Looking ahead, we will continue to invest in our highest performing teams, consistent with our vision to be the number one STEM talent provider in the best STEM markets. Our focus on contract and the continued strength of our performance in Continental Europe and across key sectors leave us confident that there are good growth opportunities available for us this year.”

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