LONDON, July 27 (Reuters) – British business media group Informa (INF.L) said delegates and sponsors returned to its core events and training courses in the first half, helping it beat sales and earnings forecasts and hike its dividend 25 percent.
Informa said on Tuesday publishing revenues remained resilient, with three-quarters now delivered electronically, and said it continued to benefit from cost-cutting programmes initiated in 2008 and 2009.
The company, whose exhibition portfolio includes Arab Health and Palm China, said it was confident about its balance of stable publishing revenues and cyclical event revenues, despite a fragile and uneven global economic recovery.
“While we remain cautious about the economic recovery, we are confident in the resilience, diversity and flexibility of our model,” it said in a statement. “We remain in line with our expectations for the full year.”
Revenues for the first half to end-June were down 0.5 percent organically to 624 million pounds ($964 million), beating the weighted average of 615 million pounds given by Thomson Reuters StarMine SmartEstimates.
Adjusted operating profit was up 5.6 percent to 153 million pounds, also beating the SmartEstimate of 146 million, while adjusted diluted earnings per share were 16.7 pence, compared with the SmartEstimate of 15.4 pence.
Informa raised its dividend to 4.5 pence. (Reporting by Georgina Prodhan; Editing by Mike Nesbit) ($1=.6473 Pounds)