NORTHGATE PLC


INTERIM RESULTS FOR THE SIX MONTHS ENDED 31 OCTOBER 2014


Northgate plc (“Northgate”, the “Company” or the “Group”), the UK and Spain’s leading specialist in light commercial vehicle hire, announces its interim results for the half year ended 31 October 2014.

Financial Highlights

• 49% increase in underlying profit before tax(1) to £47.8m (2013 – £32.0m);

• 70% increase in profit before tax to £46.7m (2013 – £27.4m);

• 56% increase in underlying basic earnings per share(2) to 28.6p (2013 – 18.3p);

• 78% increase in basic earnings per share to 27.9p (2013 – 15.7p);

• As expected, net debt increased by 15% to £397.0m (April 2014 – £346.1m), supporting growth in both countries:
o Gearing(3) increased to 100% (April 2014 – 91%);

• Return on capital employed(4) increased to 11.4% (April 2014 – 9.9%);

• 34% increase in interim dividend to 4.3p per share (2013 – 3.2p).

Operational Highlights

• Vehicles on hire growth of 1,800 in the UK since 30 April 2014, including 1,100 from new sites opened since February 2013 (2013 – growth of 2,800);

• Vehicles on hire growth of 1,300 in Spain since 30 April 2014 (2013 – growth of 1,200);

• Four new sites opened in the UK in the half year, another opened since 31 October and three more planned by 30 April 2015;

• Average utilisation over the period of 89% in the UK (2013 – 88%) and 92% in Spain (2013 – 93%);

• Closing fleet of 57,000 in the UK (April 2014 – 53,900) and 40,000 in Spain (April 2014 – 37,800).


Bob Mackenzie, Chairman, commented:

“We are pleased by the growth delivered by the Group in the first six months of the year. This reflects the work done in recent years, in particular, supporting the continued investment being made in our people, systems and infrastructure. Our plans to open new sites in the UK are on track and trading from these new sites is exceeding our initial plans.

The Board remains confident that we are well positioned to deliver further growth and attractive returns to shareholders. The Group is currently trading slightly ahead of our expectations.”

See full statement and results.