Spring Group suffers sales decline

International recruiter Spring Group has experienced a drop in sales in both its permanent and temporary business, according to a pre-close period trading statement ahead of the firm’s interim results for the first six months of the year, to be reported on 6 August.

Spring’s contract business, which now accounts for roughly 85% of net fee income (NFI), experienced a 16% reduction compared with the first half of last year, while permanent business fell by 49%, resulting in a 23% reduction in group NFI year-on- year.

Spring says it will continue to focus on maintaining a strong balance sheet and finished the period with over £48m net cash (June 2008: £26.1m), in order to review acquisition opportunities and maintain investment where appropriate, to take advantage of longer term growth.

Peter Searle, chief executive of Spring Group, says: “While the first half has been tough for the recruitment sector, our RPO and contract offerings have provided us with some resilience in these difficult markets.

“We believe that our strong bias towards temporary staffing, our robust cash position and our investment in infrastructure enable Spring to both weather current market conditions and to benefit from longer term growth opportunities.”