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UBM plc (UBM)


Monday 03 November, 2014

UBM plc

Strategy Update - Events First


                                                                3 November 2014

                    UBM plc Strategy Update - Events First                     

UBM plc's Chief Executive Tim Cobbold will today deliver UBM's "Events First"
strategy. The presentation will set out the strategic priorities for the
business over the next three to five years and in particular how UBM will drive
profitable growth by focusing its resources on its largest and most profitable
shows, increasing its efficiency and effectiveness through the consistent use
of standardised systems and focusing on operational excellence.

Commenting on the strategy update, Tim Cobbold said:

"Events First recognises that the Events industry is a highly attractive,
growing, global industry in which UBM is already a leading player. We have the
opportunity to establish UBM firmly as the leading B2B events business globally
and thereby to create substantial value for shareholders."

"To achieve this goal we will focus on our clear priorities: applying our
resources to grow our largest and most profitable shows; effecting a step
change in the efficiency and effectiveness of our operational performance; and
investing in customer insight to enhance their event experience."

"The strategy we are announcing today will enable us to grow revenues ahead of
global GDP in our Events business and provide a basis for margin expansion over
the medium term."

Market Context

The Events market is a large, attractive global market which is forecast to
grow at around five per cent per annum. UBM is a leading operator in a highly
fragmented market, strongly positioned for growth given its geographic
weighting towards Emerging Markets and its diversification across attractive
industry verticals. Innovation in social media, data capture and analysis, and
in content delivery has the capacity to make UBM's events even more effective
for customers, increasing their engagement and driving strong returns on their
marketing spend.

Driving Growth

UBM's top 100 shows by revenue generated more than 96% of Events EBITA in 2013.
UBM will focus its resources on growing these higher margin shows through the
sharing of operational best practice and application of common tools for
marketing and customer relationship management. In the future UBM will more
actively manage the balance of more than 200 shows while investing in those
shows with greater growth opportunity.

UBM will look to invest between £25m and £50m per annum in acquisitions of
Events businesses subject to strict criteria, including return on investment
greater than UBM's weighted average cost of capital in the first full year of

Driving Efficiency and Effectiveness

UBM will deploy standardised systems and processes consistently across the
business to better leverage UBM's scale advantage, drive efficiency and
effectiveness, and to further enhance UBM's capability as a consolidator in the

Enhancing Value for UBM's Customers

UBM will invest in data acquisition and analysis to improve insight into
customers' needs. This will enable UBM to innovate using digital technologies
to both enhance customers' experience at events and return on their investment.
As part of this UBM will continue to more closely align its Other Marketing
Services segment with the Events segment, and will rationalize and exit Other
Marketing Services activities that are not well aligned.

PR Newswire

PR Newswire continues to enjoy brand and market leadership, notably in premium
wire services in the US. The business has demonstrated consistent revenue
growth and strong operating profit due to its diverse product set and its
diversified and high quality revenue base. Reflecting UBM's focus on
shareholder value, the strategy for PR Newswire concentrates on its core
strengths in distribution while also leveraging PR Newswire's global
distribution network to support further international expansion. Overall PR
Newswire's revenues are expected to grow in line with GDP and margins to be
stable with modest upside potential.

Financial Impact and Policy

To implement the strategy outlined above UBM expects to make capital
investments of approximately £15m in the period 2015-2017 in the development
and roll-out of standardised systems. UBM also anticipates associated
implementation and rationalisation costs of between £15m and £20m over the
period 2015-2017 expected to be taken as operating expense. These investments
are expected to give rise to annualised cost savings beginning in 2016 which
will build to £10m per annum.

Revenue growth in 2015 is expected to reflect the decision to rationalise UBM's
smaller Events and to exit over time from certain activities in the Other
Marketing Services segment. Underlying margins in Events and OMS are expected
to be stable before the additional implementation costs referred to above, with
upside potential over the medium term.

Going forward, UBM intends to target a leverage ratio of between 1.5-2.0 times
net debt / EBITDA which is consistent with investment grade metrics, will
provide flexibility for biennial cycles, and will provide capacity to invest in
the business.

The Board will maintain its progressive dividend policy, targeting a dividend
covered two times by adjusted earnings through the cycle.

Update on Advanstar

The proposed acquisition has received Hart-Scott-Rodino antitrust clearance,
satisfying the only regulatory condition to closing. In addition, UBM expects
to publish its shareholder circular and prospectus in the coming days, with a
general meeting expected to be convened for the end of November. The proposed
acquisition is expected to close around the year end.

                                    * Ends -                                   

UBM plc                                                                         
Peter Bancroft Director of            [email protected]   +44 207 921 5961 
Kate Postans   Head of Investor       [email protected]     +44 207 921 5023 
Chantal        Investor Relations     [email protected] +44 207 921 5943 
Bradford       Manager                                                          
Jon Coles, Andy Rivett-Carnac         [email protected]   +44 207 404 5959 
& Craig Breheny                                                                 

Notes to Editors

 1. Interview with Tim Cobbold
A recorded video interview with Tim Cobbold about UBM's strategy is available -
subject to regulatory constraints - from UBM's website,

 2. About UBM plc
UBM plc is a leading global events-led marketing services and communications
company. We help businesses do business, bringing the world's buyers and
sellers together at events, online and in print. Our 5,000 staff in more than
20 countries are organised into specialist teams which serve commercial and
professional communities, helping them to do business and their markets to work
effectively and efficiently.

For more information, go to; for UBM corporate news, follow us on
Twitter at @UBM_plc and go to for more UBM social
media options.

Cautionary statement regarding forward-looking statements

This announcement may contain certain forward-looking statements, beliefs or
opinions, with respect to the financial condition, results of operations and
business of UBM, Advanstar and the Enlarged Group.

These statements, which contain the words "anticipate", "believe", "intend",
"estimate", "expect", "may", "will", "seek", "continue", "aim", "target",
"projected", "plan", "goal," "achieve" and words of similar meaning, reflect
the Company's beliefs and expectations and are based on numerous assumptions
regarding the Company's present and future business strategies and the
environment the Company and the Enlarged Group will operate in and are subject
to risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially.
No representation is made that any of these statements or forecasts will come
to pass or that any forecast results will be achieved. Forward-looking
statements involve inherent known and unknown risks, uncertainties and
contingencies because they relate to events and depend on circumstances that
may or may not occur in the future and may cause the actual results,
performance or achievements of the Company or the Enlarged Group to be
materially different from those expressed or implied by such forward looking
statements. Many of these risks and uncertainties relate to factors that are
beyond the Company's or the Enlarged Group's ability to control or estimate
precisely, such as future market conditions, currency fluctuations, the
behaviour of other market participants, the actions of regulators and other
factors such as the Company's or the Enlarged Group's ability to continue to
obtain financing to meet its liquidity needs, changes in the political, social
and regulatory framework in which the Company or Advanstar operates or in
economic or technological trends or conditions. Past performance of the Company
or Advanstar cannot be relied on as a guide to future performance. As a result,
you are cautioned not to place undue reliance on such forward-looking
statements. The list above is not exhaustive and there are other factors that
may cause the Company's or the Enlarged Group's actual results to differ
materially from the forward-looking statements contained in this announcement
Forward-looking statements speak only as of their date and the Company, its
parent and subsidiary undertakings, the subsidiary undertakings of such parent
undertakings and any of their respective directors, officers, employees,
agents, affiliates or advisers expressly disclaim any obligation to supplement,
amend, update or revise any of the forward-looking statements made herein,
except where it would be required to do so under applicable law.

You are advised to read this announcement and, once published, the Prospectus
in their entirety for a further discussion of the factors that could affect
UBM's future performance. In light of these risks, uncertainties and
assumptions, the events described in the forward-looking statements in this
announcement may not occur.

No statement in this announcement is intended as a profit forecast or a profit
estimate and no statement in this announcement should be interpreted to mean
that earnings per share of UBM for the current or future financial years would
necessarily match or exceed the historical published earnings per share of UBM.


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