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Taylor Nelson Sofres (TNS)

  Print      Mail a friend       Annual reports

Monday 01 July, 2002

Taylor Nelson Sofres

Trading Statement

Taylor Nelson Sofres PLC
01 July 2002

                            Taylor Nelson Sofres plc

                            Pre-close trading update

                         Expectations remain unchanged

In line with current market practice, Taylor Nelson Sofres, a world leader in
market information, issues the following trading update ahead of its interim
results announcement on 9 September 2002.


The group's expectations for the year remain unchanged from those expressed by
the Chairman at the AGM held on 11 June.  Against a background of relatively
flat markets in Europe and the US, with clients again deferring some of their
spend into the second half, the group has performed well.

In Europe, while the UK reported a decline in a weak market, good operating
performances were recorded in a number of countries, including France and
Germany.  In the US, the group's custom business is again out-performing the
market, although the Americas region as a whole is expected to show a slight
downturn in the first half.  Good double-digit growth has been achieved in Asia
Pacific and this level of increase is thought to be sustainable through the

The strongest sector performance has been shown by the group's Healthcare
operations, which continue to win share and produced another excellent result.
While Telecoms has been affected by the contraction of Indetec's services in the
US, ongoing strong relationships with major IT clients have led to a
satisfactory performance for IT/Telecoms in the first half and increasing growth
is anticipated.

As stated at the AGM, it has not yet been possible to make up the shortfall
created by previously announced contract losses and this has affected the
comparative performance of the Consumer and Media sectors.  This is also the
principal reason for the downturn in the UK and has slightly held back what was
a good trading performance in France.  It is anticipated, therefore, that for
the first six months of 2002 the group's underlying growth will be relatively
flat.  Overall turnover performance for the period, including acquisitions, is
expected to be well ahead of the previous year.

Discontinued operations

The group is in the process of discontinuing its loss-making, non-market
information consultancy businesses in the UK and France.  In addition, the
decision has been taken to close its UK in-store product testing company, which
has continued to under-perform and on which a goodwill impairment was taken in

Operating margin

During the first half, the group has achieved further operational efficiencies,
resulting in a satisfactory level of margin improvement on continuing
activities.  This emphasis will be maintained through the year and the group
still expects to achieve an operating margin improvement of around 50 basis
points for the year as a whole.

Interest cover and cash flow

In the first half of the year, the group has repeated the strong cash generation
achieved in 2001 and it is anticipated that interest cover will have improved
over the period.


Chief Executive, Mike Kirkham, said: "The normal pattern in our industry is for
the second half to be stronger than the first.  Our expectation is that we will
see a repeat of this pattern in 2002 with, if anything, a stronger emphasis on
the second half than is usual.

"Our order book continues to be ahead of last year and the acquisitions made
this year are performing well.   We expect to see improved organic growth in the
second half and to achieve anticipated levels of turnover for the year as a

For further information, please contact:

David Lowden, Finance Director
+44 (0)20 8967 4009

Janis Parks, Head of Investor Relations
+44 (0)20 8967 1584

Margaret George, Citigate Dewe Rogerson
+44 (0)20 7638 9571

Email to: [email protected]

Note to editors

Through its international network in more than 50 countries, Taylor Nelson
Sofres provides market information services in over 80 countries to national and
multi-national organisations.  It is ranked as the fourth largest market
information group in the world.   Further information on Taylor Nelson Sofres is
available from the corporate website:

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

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