Northgate plc (“Northgate”, the “Company” or the “Group”), today publishes its Interim Management Statement covering the period from 1 November 2013 to 12 March 2014.

UK

Vehicles on hire have risen by 1,100 during the period, to 47,000 at 12 March 2014 from 45,900 at 31 October 2013. This compares to a fall of 900 in the same period last year. Vehicles on hire have risen by 3,900 (9%) since 30 April 2013.

As usual, during the period the business experienced a seasonal impact, but this was reduced compared to the previous year. Between 31 October 2013 and 31 December 2013 vehicles on hire fell from 45,900 to 43,900. This reduction of 2,000 compares to a reduction of 2,900 in the same period last year.

The increase in vehicles on hire since 31 October 2013 includes growth of 600 vehicles from the six sites opened since February 2013, ahead of our expectations.  We are expecting to open a further four to six sites in the London area in the next six months.

Vehicle utilisation in the period to 12 March 2014 has averaged 87%, compared to 88% in the same period in the prior year.   Fleet size has increased from 52,800 at 31 October 2013 to 53,200.  Utilisation returned to 88% in February and continues to improve.

Underlying hire revenue per rented vehicle has increased by 1% compared to the last financial year. 

The used vehicle market remains strong, with residual values in line with those experienced in the six months ended 31 October 2013.

Spain

Vehicles on hire have fallen by 500 during the period, to 32,800 at 12 March 2014 from 33,300 at 31 October 2013. This compares to a fall of 800 in the same period last year.  Vehicles on hire have risen by 700 (2%) since 30 April 2013.

In the period the business experienced an increased seasonal impact with vehicles on hire falling from 33,300 at 31 October 2013 to 32,000 at 31 December 2013.  This reduction of 1,300 compares to a reduction of 500 in the same period last year and was partly driven by increased seasonal demand seen in the summer and autumn period this year.

Vehicle utilisation in the period to 12 March 2014 has averaged 91% compared to 89% in the same period last year.  The fleet has decreased by 600 since 31 October 2013 to 35,900.

Underlying hire revenue per rented vehicle has fallen 1% in comparison to the last financial year. This reduction has been mitigated by an increasing proportion of customers operating our fleet in such a way that running costs are reduced and residual values are improved.       

The used vehicle market remains strong, with residual values in line with those experienced in the six months ended 31 October 2013.

Outlook

Vehicles on hire continue to grow in the UK, with signs of stabilisation in Spain.  The growth from the new sites opened is ahead of our expectations and we will continue to invest in new sites that provide the required levels of return.

The Group continues to trade in line with our expectations and the strong financial position of the Group remains unchanged.

For further information, please contact:

Northgate plc                                                01325 467558

Bob Contreras, Chief Executive

Chris Muir, Group Finance Director

 

MHP Communications                                020 3128 8100

 

Andrew Jaques

 

Barnaby Fry

 

Simon Hockridge

 

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