Universe Group PLC
19 April 2000
UNIVERSE GROUP PLC
At the AGM held at 10.30am today Ray Mackie, Executive
Chairman of Universe Group, the retail and information
systems company, will tell shareholders:
'Following the demerger of our former payment card
fraud prevention businesses and the sale of the Inter-
Clear business to De La Rue on 20 March 2000, the year
has started well for the Universe Group.
HTEC put in a good first quarter in line with
Master Change is continuing to expand into Europe with
the announcement of three new high profile branches in
February and several more currently being negotiated.
The three we have opened are performing above our
expectations and at the end of the first quarter Master
Change is well ahead of the same period last year.
Following the demerger we resolved to operate with a
low cost head office organisation. We have been
successful in this.
As envisaged at the time of the demerger, Nigel
Whittaker will stand down as a non-executive director
at the conclusion of this meeting. Having been
Chairman of CardCast in 1996, Nigel became Chairman on
its merger with Card Clear at the end of that year.
Nigel was Chairman throughout 1997, 1998 and 1999 and
the rest of the Board have expressed their thanks for
his leadership in guiding the company through some
difficult times to a successful conclusion.
Nigel will be replaced by George Welham, Deputy
Chairman of Financial Dynamics Limited, as a non-
executive director and we are looking forward to
working with George during the next phase of the
Ray Mackie, Chairman, Universe Group plc
020 7 486 9074
Richard Oldworth / Catherine Miles, Buchanan Communications
020 7 466 5000