Begbies Traynor achieves £60m revenue milestone

Begbies Traynor has reported revenues of £60.1m in its latest annual report, up 15% from £52.4m last year

The boost in revenues helped deliver higher pre-tax profits of £3.5m, up from £2.3m in 2018.

The results for the year to 30 April 2019 show continued growth for the company which has achieved compound annual growth in adjusted earnings per share of 14% over the past four years. The board is recommending an increase in the dividend of 8%. This follows an 9% increase last year, the first time it had been increased since 2011.

The Begbies Traynor Group has been ranked 17th in the Accountancy Daily Top 75 Firms Survey for the past two years.

In the core business recovery and financial advisory services business, the company increased revenues by 13.2% over last year, rising from £38.3m in 2018 to £43.3m in 2019. The company said this reflected continuing development of its advisory services coupled with increased activity in the market, largely driven by a 10% increase in corporate insolvencies in 2018.

‘In this improving market, we have maintained our market share, continuing to take the largest number of corporate insolvency appointments in the UK,’ the company said in its results statement.

Operating costs increased by £3.9m to £34.5m, up from £30.7m in 2018 because of business acquisition, internal investment and increased spend on staff. It acquired two small insolvency firms, KRE (North East) in Newcastle and Dunion & Co in Stoke-on-Trent, adding seven partners and staff from these firms.

Property services saw revenue increase to £16.7m, up from £14.2m in the previous period which was attributed to acquisitions, organic growth and the completion of several property insolvencies. Operating costs rose by £1.8m from £11.1m in 2018 to £12.9m this year.

In January, the company completed the acquisition of Croft Transport Planning & Design, providers of highways, transport and traffic planning advice, to expand the consultancy services it can offer to property developers and corporate clients. And in April it acquired Barker Storey Matthews, chartered surveyors in East Anglia, adding 38 staff to the business.

Total people in the business has risen to 650 partners and staff, compared to 576 in 2018, comprising 486 fee earners and 164 support staff.

Executive chairman Ric Traynor commented: ‘We have reported another year of strong financial performance, ahead of our original expectations, in which we have grown the business organically, completed four acquisitions and increased the dividend whilst reducing net debt. All areas of the group performed well, reflecting the benefits of recent organic investment, an increase in market activity and the good performance of recent acquisitions.

‘Looking ahead, we are better positioned than ever with multiple sources of potential growth supported by a strong financial platform. There is currently uncertainty in the UK economy as a result of the Brexit process, but with a combination of our counter-cyclical activities together with our breadth of services, we are well placed to continue our track record of growth in the new financial year and beyond.’

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