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Thursday 15 April, 2010

Interim Management Statement

RNS Number : 2093K Group PLC
15 April 2010 Group PLC - Interim Management Statement 


15 April 2010 Group PLC ("" or the "Group"), the UK's leading price comparison website, issues the following Interim Management Statement relating to the period from 1 January 2010 to 14 April 2010. The financial and operational data set out below is in respect of the Group's first quarter (1 January 2010 to 31 March 2010) unless otherwise stated. 


Internet revenues for the first quarter improved throughout the period and were approximately 6% ahead of the same period last year (9% ahead excluding Travelsupermarket) despite a slow January across the entire business when trading was below 2009 levels. Visitor numbers for the Group were 4% lower (4% higher excluding Travelsupermarket) than the first quarter of 2009 as discussed below.




Revenues in the Money vertical were approximately 7% ahead of the same period last year. Revenues from credit-related products, particularly credit cards, were ahead of last year as the availability of credit continued to improve. Other banking products, particularly savings related revenues, declined as the banks changed approach over the course of the last year. Early 2009 saw significant visitor volumes in the light of a number of base rate changes and the general uncertainty in the financial markets resulting from the banking crisis. The environment in Q1 2010 was significantly more benign. Visitor volumes were consequently approximately 15% down on the same period last year, but transaction counts over the first quarter were 8% ahead as customers shifted from researching to buying.




Revenues in the Insurance vertical were approximately 10% ahead of the same period last year. Following investments made in both site design and brand the Group continued to grow its motor insurance revenues in the period in what remains a competitive marketplace. It also continued to see growth in its other major channels including home, travel and life insurance. Visitor numbers were flat on last year, albeit with an improving trend through the quarter after the slow start to the year.


Home Services 


Revenues in the Home Services vertical were approximately 20% ahead of the same period last year primarily due to an increase in utilities revenue combined with higher shopping revenues. Visitor numbers were approximately 62% ahead of the same period last year driven by visitors to the shopping channel and the vouchers site, which was launched in November 2009.




Revenues in the Travel vertical were approximately 18% down over the same period last year on similarly reduced visitor volumes. The Group has continued to manage the travel vertical for margin in the period in what remains a difficult market for discretionary travel outside package holidays.




As indicated in the preliminary results announcement, the Group has increased its spending in connection with the new media campaign. The Group has also increased its spend on technology using flexible third-party resource, launching new credit cards and motor insurance channels in the first quarter. The results of both initiatives have been pleasing which give the Group a good base for the rest of the financial year and beyond. The Group continues to trade in line with expectations and the Board remains confident in the Group's prospects for the full year. 


The Group continues to remain cash generative and as at the end of March had cash balances of £24.8m after the payment of the special and final dividends. This includes a benefit of approximately £4m from the timing of supplier payments made shortly after the quarter end.


Peter Plumb, Chief Executive Officer, said:


"Moneysupermarket has had a solid first quarter, returning to revenue growth and we are now beginning to see the impact of the work we commenced in the second half of 2009 when we invested in both our product offering and our marketing. Customers are now enjoying a much better service and we are achieving even greater break through in a crowded media space. We will continue with this balanced investment approach in the first half, to maintain growth through the rest of the year."


Seminar for Investors and Analysts


The Group is later today holding a seminar for investors and analysts. The presentation will be available on the Group's corporate website at later today. No material new information will be disclosed.


- Ends - 


For more information, please contact: Group PLC 

Paul Doughty, Chief Financial Officer, 01244 665700 


Tulchan Communications  0207 353 4200 

Susanna Voyle

Tom Murray


·      This interim management statement may include statements that are forward looking in nature. Forward looking statements involve known and unknown risks, assumptions, uncertainties and other factors which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of the Group to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward looking statements. Except as required by the Listing Rules and applicable law, the Group undertakes no obligation to update, revise or change any forward looking statements to reflect events or developments occurring after the date such statements are published.


·      The information in this release is based on management information. 





This information is provided by RNS
The company news service from the London Stock Exchange