Wolters Kluwer, a leading multinational publisher and information services company, today announced third-quarter 2005 results affirming strategy with improved top-line growth compared to previous period and overall performance in line with full-year outlook and three-year plan.
Highlights for the third quarter 2005 include:
- Results positively reflect investments in top-line growth, reiterating full-year organic growth outlook
- Revenues 862 mln (2004: 825 mln), YTD 2,442 mln (2004: 2,428 mln)
- Organic revenues grew 2% driven by strong performance in Health; Corporate Legal Services; Tax, Accounting & Legal; and Education
- Ordinary EBITA 143 mln (2004: 142 mln), YTD 385 mln (2004: 403 mln), and third-quarter ordinary EBITA margin 17%, similar to third quarter 2004
- Structural cost savings in line with expectations; third quarter 25 million, YTD 72 mln, target increased to approximately 95 mln for full year
- Free cash flow for the third quarter 120 mln (2004: 111 mln), in line with seasonal trend of working capital; nine months 143; full-year guidance increased to approximately 300 mln
Nancy McKinstry, Chairman of the Executive Board, commented on the Company's performance over the third quarter of 2005: "Our third-quarter results reflect the momentum we are building as we execute our strategy to deliver shareholder value by focusing on core customer segments and investing in growth. Our organic revenue growth can be attributed to strong performances of new products, online and integrated solutions as well as improved customer retention. We also are encouraged by our success at expanding into adjacent market segments, particularly within Health, Tax and Accounting, and Corporate & Financial Services, which are providing additional growth opportunities. We are confident we will achieve our full-year objectives."
Key division highlights, reflecting progress made in the third quarter:
Health: Good third-quarter organic revenue growth of 2%, driven by new product launches, particularly within the Professional & Education unit, expansion of key customer relationships and Ovid online performance. Targeted acquisition underway for NDCHealth Corporation's Information Management group provides significant expansion of the division's pharmaceutical product and service offering.
Corporate & Financial Services: Strong third-quarter organic revenue growth of 6%, supported by market share gains in core corporate and UCC services, new sales of lending software products, and continued strong growth in trademark, litigation support and e-billing product lines.
Tax, Accounting & Legal: Solid year-to-date performance continued in the third quarter with organic revenue growth of 4%, driven by new and enhanced products, such as those in the Accounting Research Manager and ProSystem fx Tax and Engagement lines, and by strong customer retention and new sales of online integrated libraries in both units.
Legal, Tax & Regulatory Europe: Organic revenue growth of -1%, including the effects of product pruning, reflects good growth in Italy, Spain and Central Europe and in online products; restructurings in the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and Belgium progressing on plan.
Education: Solid organic revenue growth of 4%, in part as a result of phasing differences; challenging market conditions remain, especially in Sweden and the United Kingdom, with weakening expected in the fourth quarter.
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